The Prime Minister, Hon. Peter O’Neill CMG MP, has welcomed a briefing by Ms Christine Lagarde, International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director, to APEC Leaders in Lima.
Taking place over the APEC weekend, the ‘Informal Conversation on the Global Economic context’ provided the IMF’s perspective on regional and global economic growth potential
“The IMF briefing made it clear the global economy is in a precarious position, but at the same time the Asia-Pacific economy is still the most vibrant in the world,” Prime Minister O’Neill said.
“We can take some comfort in the enduring economic strength of the Asia-Pacific, but we must not become complacent.
“Christine Lagarde also made the point that global growth has been too low, for too long and benefiting too few and this signals warning bells.”
The Prime Minister said the IMF works to a series of growth priorities that Papua New Guinea is already the focus of government economic management and has been for some time.
“During the meeting Ms Lagarde and I discussed the way in which emerging economies manage debt levels,” PM O’Neill said.
“In her view, one of the most significant elements is ensuring the macroeconomic framework is solid, and this creates opportunity.
“Our Government has a strong track record in maintaining macroeconomic stability despite global challenges, and we are maintaining this course.
“The IMF’s prescription comes down to common-sense essentials including setting the parameters for monetary control, fiscal responsibility and structural reform,” PM O’Neil said.
“In each of these areas the Government is being proactive.
“The parameters have been established for the Central Bank to maintain independent and responsible monetary control.
“Our Government has been responsible in the fiscal management of our economy during this period of commodity price downturn and the slowing economies of some trading partners.
“We are further implementing structural reform measures in our economy to make it easier for business to operate and removing bureaucratic obstacles to deeper trade and investment.
“Ultimately the IMF is highlighting policies that advocate strong economic growth, and a commitment to renewed trade.
“In our case the Government has maintained economic growth over the past five years despite the challenges. Now, as more investors come online and inject capital into our country, our trade is also set to improve.”
The Prime Minister said the Government of Papua New Guinea will continue to adhere to the fundamentals of sound economic management and monitor developments in the global economy.