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The Government of Papua New Guinea has exhibited unwavering commitment of regional integration and cooperation to the Pacific Island countries.

During the margins of the 52nd Pacific Islands Forum Leaders Meeting in Rarotonga, Cook Islands, where leaders from across the Pacific region convened to discuss shared challenges and opportunities, the PNG Deputy Prime Minister John Rosso presented five (5) million kina in budgetary support to the Cook Islands, another five (5) million kina in humanitarian aid to Tonga and ten million kina in development assistance to the Republic of Vanuatu.

Deputy Prime Minister John Rosso with the PNG delegation in Rarotonga expressed that the significance of the support to these smaller Pacific Island states cannot be overstated.

“These contributions exemplify Papua New Guinea’s dedication to fostering goodwill and solidarity within the PIF family of nations, and they reflect a deep sense of responsibility towards the welfare of fellow island nations.” Deputy Prime Minister Rosso said.

In his bilateral meetings with the Cook Islands, Tonga and the Republic of Vanuatu, Deputy Prime Minister Rosso further emphasized the importance of regional cooperation and the collective responsibility of Pacific Island nations to address common challenges such as climate change, economic development, communication links and healthcare amongst others.

“Our destinies are intertwined, and as Pacific Island nations, we must stand together in the face of adversity.” Rosso added.

The Deputy Prime Minister explained that the aid assistance was pledged by the former government and the Marape-Rosso government is making sure these smaller island states received what Papua New Guinea has promised to them.

“We are making sure we do not just talk but we take action of what we have promised and so these funding support to our Pacific brothers are fulfilled.” Rosso said.

The aid package support were to;

1. The Cook Islands: The K5 million kina budgetary support to Cook Islands will be allocated to the Small Island States (SIS) as Cook Islands being the Chair of the SIS. This was also to honor a commitment made by the previous PNG Government to the SIS.

2. Tonga: The K5 million kina humanitarian assistance to Tonga will bolster its disaster preparedness, and to aid their post disaster recovery efforts.

3. Vanuatu: Vanuatu also benefited from the PNG Government with K10 million kina which will be allocated for the rehabilitation of the “Kumul Highway.”

The funding assistance is testament to the enduring partnership between Papua New Guinea, the Republic of Vanuatu, Tonga and Cook Islands.

“These contributions symbolize a significant step towards fostering greater collaboration among Pacific Island nations. They serve as a testament to the spirit of unity and the recognition of shared challenges that these nations face.” Deputy Prime Minister further highlighted.

The Papua New Guinea Government’s commitment to the welfare and resilience of these island states demonstrates a forward-looking approach to regional cooperation, ensuring a brighter future for all.

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