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PM’s trip to PNG to go ahead as scheduled

Wednesday 17 May 2023 | Written by Matthew Littlewood | Published in Economy, National

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PM’s trip to  PNG to go  ahead as  scheduled
Prime Minister Mark Brown. Picture: AL WILLIAMS/23031009

Prime Minister Mark Brown will continue his trip to Papua New Guinea as initially planned despite the announcement that US President Joe Biden has cancelled his visit.

Biden yesterday scrapped plans for a historic visit to PNG next week for the US-Pacific Summit to focus on debt limit negotiations with Republicans in Washington, which have reached a critical point.

In a statement to Cook Islands News last night, Prime Minister’s Office said: “The primary purpose for PM Brown to visit Papua New Guinea is to attend the India-Pacific Islands Summit hosted by the India Prime Minister Modi and PNG Prime Minister Marape.”

“United States President Joe Biden’s decision to now not fly in to meet the PIF Leaders does not impact his attendance at these meetings.”

Brown, who is also the chair of the Pacific Islands Forum, is attending the 79th Session of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) in Bangkok, Thailand.

He will travel to Japan to attend the G7 meeting being held in Hiroshima, Japan, from May 20-21. On his way home PM Brown will head to Papua New Guinea to attend the India - Pacific Islands Summit. He will arrive back in the Cook Islands in time to present the Budget in Parliament on May 24.

Brown welcomed the increased engagement by the larger countries in the Pacific as an opportunity to discuss and articulate Pacific challenges and opportunities at leader level.