Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese welcomes his PNG Counterpart James Marape

Wednesday, 7 February 2024, 2:37 pm

Anthony Albanese and James Marape during a leaders' forum, 2022 [Twitter: @AlboMP]

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has welcomed his Papua New Guinean counterpart James Marape, today, who is on an official government visit to Australia from 7 to 9 February 2024.

This latest political meeting between the two highest government officials will build on the Bilateral Security Agreement signed last year, and address security and economic cooperation, infrastructure and deepening people-to-people links.

Prime Minister Marape is expected to address the Members and Senators of the Australian Parliament in Canberra on Thursday with Prime Minister Albanese indicating this significant event as the first in-person address by a foreign leader since 2020.

“I warmly welcome Prime Minister Marape back to Australia,” Albanese said.

“As close neighbours and regional leaders, our security and prosperity are bound together.

“I was deeply honoured to be the first foreign head of Government to address Papua New Guinea’s National Parliament, and as the leader of Australia’s closest neighbour, it is fitting to invite Prime Minister Marape to do the same."

Albanese said Australia and Papua New Guinea have a deep and longstanding partnership based on common history and shared vision for a peaceful, prosperous and resilient Pacific region.

He reaffirmed that Australia and PNG look forward to celebrating Papua New Guinea’s 50th independence next year, signifying its unrelenting support.