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ADB and Japan Support Safe Shipping in Papua New Guinea
PORT MORESBY, PAPUA NEW GUINEA - Preparatory work has begun on a project to improve the efficiency and safety of international and coastal shipping in Papua New Guinea (PNG) by increasing the coverage of maritime navigational aids, including lighthouses and channel markers.
A $600,000 grant from the ADB-administered Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction (JFPR) will help prepare the Safe Shipping and Rural Access Project, with the PNG Government contributing $200,000 to the overall cost.
“The project will support safe and economic national shipping services in PNG and in doing so will increase access to markets, education and health services,” said Marcelo Minc, Country Director of ADB’s Papua New Guinea Resident Mission.
This week, ADB officials, as well as officials from the Departments of Planning, Transport, and Treasury, the National Maritime Safety Authority, and the Embassy of Japan met in Port Moresby to exchange ideas for developing the new project.
Under the project preparatory assistance, the National Maritime Safety Authority will develop safety awareness programs for communities and shipping operators, which is hoped will lead to a reduction in maritime accidents.
The new project will also further scale up the safety and efficiency of maritime and waterways transport by improving navigational aids along coastlines and extending the coverage of electronic navigational charts. It will also extend frequent shipping services to some remote, rural communities through a franchise shipping scheme that was initiated by the government’s Community Water Transport Project in 2009.
“This project will be particularly important to 60% of PNG’s population who live on islands or the coast and depend on safe, reliable water transport,” said Chris Rupen, General Manager of the National Maritime Safety Authority.
In 2008, PNG and ADB helped improve the shipping service environment by repairing, upgrading or constructing navigational aids along international shipping routes.
The new project will further scale up the safety and efficiency of maritime and waterways transport by improving navigational aids along coastlines and extending the coverage of electronic navigational charts. The Safe Shipping and Rural Access Project will extend frequent shipping services to some remote, rural communities through a franchise shipping scheme that was initiated by the government’s Community Water Transport Project in 2009.