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Marketing Papua New Guinean Culture

Papua New Guinea is a land of diverse culture; from the highlands to the coast and further out to the islands, every region, every province, every tribe is unique and the customs and cultures that accompany them differ significantly.

The way a mat is woven in the Southern region may differ to how it is woven in the Momase region, or the way a bilum is woven or knitted, and the material used differs exponentially from the highlands to the coast.

Over the decades the entrepreneurial spirit has driven Papua New Guineans to commercialise from our cultures.

From craft markets selling beaded bracelets and necklaces, fans woven from palms and purses and clutches made out of tapa; all organic, all Papua New Guinean.

A key trend surfacing in past years is the commercialising of the Papua New Guinean culture; from the tapa cloth to woven mats and to the most symbolic, the bilum.

However, the challenge lies in moving from the craft markets to the international markets.

And this is where organizations such as the Pacific Horticultural and Agricultural Market Access Program, intercede.

PHAMA, works with the public and private sectors to promote Pacific exports of primary and value added produce.

One of the businesses working under the PHAMA umbrella is Maku Gifts.

EMTV spoke to owner, Annette Sete, about her largely popular ‘Lava girl jewelry’ and marketing her products overseas.


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