Ministersof Arts & Culture fromthe Melanesian Spearhead Group states and territories are inthe country, holding talks.
Amongthe issues, are discussions onthe 5th Melanesian Festival of Arts & Culture, whicPNG will host from June next year.
The official opening ofthe MSG Ministersfor Arts & Culture meeting was held yesterday atthe Grand Papua Hotel in Port Moresby.
The delegation comprised representatives fromthe Solomon Islands, New Caledonia, Fiji,Indonesia and Timor Leste.
The Council of Arts & Culture, comprising senior cultural officials had met earlier on Wednesday and Thursday. It isthe first time forPNG to host this body.
“We are delighted to be here in Papua New Guinea” said Faua Yvon – Chair MSG Ministersof Arts & Culture.
Talks were centered on matters relating tothe protection and preservation of Melanesian traditions, arts & culture. “This program in PNG rsquo;s firstoand for us come togther and meet shows that we are united as Melanesian brthers and sisters, said Beka Kondra, Minister for Tourism, Arts & Culture.
Chair ofthe MSG Ministersof Arts & Culture,the FLNKS, saidthe MSG was a unique group that contained 90% ofthe Pacific Regions population, and much ofthe region’s land, resources, languages as well as exciting rich culture.
“We have an important role to play in advancing one ofthe key objectives ofthe MSG, and that is promoting and strenthening Melanesian cultures and traditions, and values,” said Faua Yvon.
National Cultural Commission Executive Director Dr Jacob Simet said so far most countries inthe sub region have now developed mechanisms for the protection of traditional knowledge.
Also effective now, isthe regional mechanism, butthere have been challenges.
“There are issues of ensuring our implementation of international obligations. We are happy that we have been able to come up with ways forward,” said Simet.
Withthe MSG marking its Silver Jubilee this year, it was a time to reflect on achievements and focus on aspirations for the next 25 years.
The Ministersand officials were assured by Minister Kondra thaPNG would be ready to hostthe Festival of Arts and Culture come 2014.
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