VANUATU, PAPUA NEW GUINEA PLAN TRADE TALKS

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Melanesian Spearhead nations show solidarity

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, Aug.25, 2011) – Vanuatu and Papua New Guinea have agreed to enter into talks about striking up a new trade agreement.

Vanuatu's Ambassador to the European Union Roy Mickey-Joy is co-ordinating the talks.

He said his country can benefit from PNG's experience and leadership in industries such as natural gas and fishing.

"But Vanuatu has to be able to be astute and take advantage of opportunities as they arises." "Vanuatu is only a small country of 250,000 people while Papua New Guinea has a population of 7 million people.

[PIR editor’s note: Vanuatu and Papua New Guinea, along with the Solomon Islands and Fiji, are members of the Melanesian Spearhead Group, whose object is to enhance Melanesian economic and political security. The group raised regional eyebrows when it elected Fiji military ruler Frank Bainimarama to head the four-nation body.]

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