The future of our region is tied to the future of APEC. With APEC’s continued efforts on sustainable, inclusive and innovative growth, and a focus on free and open trade, we hope to see everyone in our region reap the rewards.

The Papua New Guinea that the world will see during APEC Leaders Week is a country ready to embrace the future and everything it has to offer. A country defined by its people – friendly and warm; hardworking and ambitious; always ready with a helping hand. Australia is proud to continue to work with Papua New Guinea during this important historical event, and beyond.  We know our future together will be as rich and meaningful as our history.

Australia’s support to PNG’s APEC will benefit regional economic integration and commitment to trade in the region. It will also facilitate stronger partnerships for economic growth, security, and relationships between the people of our region.

he most interesting opportunities we get as DFAT officers are not always found behind a desk in Canberra. Earlier this year I had the opportunity to accompany Simon Newnham, Australia’s APEC Ambassador and First Assistant Secretary of the Investment and Economic Division, on a visit to Tokyo. As part of that visit, Simon addressed a Symposium hosted by Japan’s Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (RIETI) and the Australian National University (ANU).

Some of the most useful work we do as DFAT officers is not behind our desks – it’s when we’re face-to-face engaging with and learning from our global counterparts. I was reminded of this when I spent the day with a delegation of 55 Papua New Guinean officials who will lead and contribute to PNG’s hosting of APEC in 2018.