2015 Pacific Games In PNG Eyed By Australian Businesses

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Games expected to attract more than 6,000 athletes, officials

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, Oct. 9, 2013) – Businesses in northern Australia are looking to get in on the action as preparations are underway for the 15th Pacific Games in Papua New Guinea in 2015.

The Games will be held in Port Moresby and coincide with the 40th anniversary of PNG's independence.

The regional body for economic development Advance Cairns and the Queensland's Chamber of Commerce have been working with games organisers to identify goods and services that can be supplied from Australia.

A number of tenders have been announced for services such as cleaning and management, catering and demolition works associated with the new 15,000-seat Sir John Guise stadium in PNG.

The chief executive of Advance Cairns Mark Matthews says there are more tenders to come.

"There's already been some contracts in building, construction and waste facilities right down to providing tickets for each of the activities," he said.

"It's really from A to Z."

The Games is expecting welcome over 6,000 athletes and officials, in an event bigger than the Commonwealth Games.

Mr. Matthews told Pacific Beat that the Games are solely a PNG production, but there are opportunities for Australian businesses.

"I think it's an opportunity for businesses in this region to further strengthen the relationships that they've had or find new partnerships with PNG businesses for supplies and services," he said.

The Games will also raise the profile of PNG, according to Mr. Matthews who expects interest in investment in the region to rise as well.

He says that PNG is not just looking to Australia to ink investment deals.

"From a PNG perspective, [they are] looking at best level of supply and cheapest cost," Mr. Matthews said.

Despite the opportunities, Mr. Matthews says there are also risks in any business undertaking.

"Any sensible business manages that risk appropriately," he said.

"I think what's important as part of the supply of the goods and services is that you have a strong partnership... with existing businesses and trusted people that can grow and develop over the years."

It is hoped that contracts sealed in the run up to the Games, could open doors to other deals with PNG in the future.

"Many of our businesses are already supplying into PNG," Mr. Matthews said.

"The resources sector as you know has been very strong over many years now.

"And it's just really a further opportunity for the region's businesses to promote the excellence that they have and develop those relationships for the long term."

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