Papua New Guinea welcomes increasing involvement of India in PNG’s economy, the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade said at an event held in Port Moresby to mark India’s Republic Day.
“It is very satisfying to see India intensify its trade and commercial activities in our own country, and to see it boost its presence in the whole of the Pacific region,” Minister Pato said in a speech to an event on 25 January attended by the Indian High Commissioner, His Excellency Vijai Kumar, and prominent PNG political and business figures.
Also attending were members of the diplomatic community, senior PNG public servants, and other prominent PNG and Indian citizens.
Minister Pato said India’s generosity to PNG in terms of development funding is much appreciated.
In calling for more investment by Indian business sector,Minister Pato noted that India’s giant commercial operations are striding across the world and are becoming more aware of resource-rich Papua New Guinea and its huge potential.
Minister Pato said that all Indians in their homeland and all around the world, including in Papua New Guinea, Republic Day, observed on 26 January, is a justifiable source of pride.
“This day firmly established India’s commitment to democracy and rule of law,” he said.
“India became the role model for many colonies around the world- and it still is a good example to many countries, including my own, in so many ways.”
Minister Pato said India showed the world that democracy is not only possible in countries of extreme diversity, but it is a healthy way to ensure national unity by the principle of the inclusiveness of all people.
“For Papua New Guinea, therefore, India was an inspiring example– we have united our country with its 1000 tribes and more than 800 distinct languages.”
Minister Pato said India is the world’s largest democracy, and will soon be its most populous nation.
“India is a strong advocate of law in the international community, supporting – as does PNG - a rules-based international order.
“When India deepens its connection with other countries it brings with it the flower of its ancient and modern cultures.
“As the birthplace of two world religions, Hinduism and Buddhism, and with its links to other great faiths including Christianity,India sets an example of the importance of the spiritual.
“It also sets the example of an emphasis of the arts such as a thriving movie and literary scene, and one of the world’s most popular cuisines.
“With the presence in our country of an expatriate Indian population active in the professions, commerce and mining sectors, we realise the potential of a wider and deeper involvement.
“On special days like this, we are reminded of India and its great contribution to humanity.”