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THINK TANK: AUSSIES’ MILLIONS WASTED ON PNG PNG has little to show for $318 million a year

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, Dec. 16, 2009) – A leading Australian think-tank, the Lowy Institute, says Australia must radically rethink the way it provides aid to Papua New Guinea.

The Pacific News Service reports economists believe PNG's most pressing needs are job creation strategies, improved education services, and more infrastructure.

But the institute's Jenny Hayward-Jones, says under Australia's existing aid policy, about half of the US$318 million given to PNG each year is spent elsewhere.

She says ordinary PNG people are not seeing the impact of the aid spending and she believes Australian tax payers are not seeing outcomes either.

Ms Hayward-Jones says Australia's current policy focuses on good governance and strengthening PNG's institutions when in fact the money should be going to things like health clinics and schools.

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