January 10: The India Pacific Islands Trade Council organized the India Papua New Guinea Summit, attended by the Business community in Tamil Nadu.

The President of the Indian Economic Trade Organization Dr. Asif Iqbal, welcomed the High Commissioner of Papua New Guinea HE Paulias Korni and pledged the commitment of support between the two nations for a robust partnership. There is a huge interest in India for Papua New Guinea, a country with great scope for bilateral trading opportunities in Oil, Gas and Gold. The Delegation from India headed by the then president Shri Pranab Mukherjee evinced a lot of interest between the two nations.

The event was attended by the Head of MEA Secretariat in Chennai Shri. Venkata chalam Murugan IFS who also spoke about accelerating India’s relationship with the Pacific region and its support for the various other island nations around Papua New Guinea. India has also, in the past, extended various credit lines to Papua New Guinea through the Exim Bank.

The event also was graced by the Tamilnadu Minister for Finance and Human Resources Management Shri. Palanivel Thiaga Rajanand Shri. Gingee KS Masthan welcomed the High Commissioner of PNG and have supported the bilateral collaboration opportunities.

Finance Minister Palanivel Thiaga Rajan said global trade relations were essential, and it was gratifying to see the development of trade relations between India and Papua New Guinea. Tamil Nadu Minister Shri. Gingee KS Masthan also appealed Tamils living abroad to invest in the state and said the role of expatriate Tamils was essential for economic development. The Minister for Minorities Welfare and Non-Resident Tamils ‘Welfare said Tamils living abroad should come to Tamil Nadu to start a business, and Chief Minister MK Stalin was taking special steps in this connection.

“As a President of the organization, my goal is to build bilateral relations reach new heights between India and Papua New Guinea and our delegation in 2015 saw tremendous interest from the Indian side, Next delegation from TamilNadu will go in the month of March 2022,” said Dr. Asif Iqbal who is looking to connect the companies for business in PNG. The Indian delegation will explore opportunities in areas of contractual farming, poultry industry, meat Processing and agricultural collaborations and also identify other opportunities for building up a robust infrastructure needs of the country in the field of setting up Gold refinery.

The High Commissioner also presented the coffee beans from Papua New Guinea to all dignitaries and expressed interest in supporting the MOU signed between GD Café Pvt Ltd and ADZGURU headed by Mr. Sujoy Maitra. Mr Sujoy Maitra is the Advisor to the Papua New Guinea Government and is working on the dual taxation treaty between India and PNG.“I also would like to pledge the support for the M S CELLAMUTHU FOUNDATION headed by Dr. C. Ramasubramanian, who is doing yeoman service to the community of mentally challenged for enabling the employment and jobs,” said Mr. Sujoy Maitra.

The High Commissioner also expressed great interest in supporting the trade relations between the two countries and invited the trade community to explore all the available choices for investors.

With a population of 7.1 million and 462.840 sq km of area, PNG is the largest Pacific Island nation, both in terms of population and area. Over 3,000 Indians, mostly businessmen and professionals, work here in different areas, including IT and IT-enabled services, education, and mining.

Bilateral trade amounts to $209 million, $157 million from imports and $52.19 million from exports. Indian companies are looking at various projects coming up in PNG, consequent to the discovery of natural gas, and growth in commerce and trade, especially in Indian processed food, is likely to increase as the PNG market expands.

During the event, The India Pacific Trade Council also presented the certificate of Appointment to Dr. R.C.M. Vishnu Prabhu M.D. as the National Trade Commissioner and Mr. JayanthiLal as the Trade Commissioner for Commodities. Both will be taking delegations to the island nation to strengthen mechanisms created for enabling these trade opportunities between both countries.