Sunday August 27, 2023
Opening Dinner of the Inaugural Pacific ICT Dialogue Officiated by Prime Minister Hon. James Marape, at APEC Haus, Port Moresby
The highly anticipated Inaugural Pacific ICT Ministers’ Dialogue commenced with a spectacular welcome dinner held at the Ela Beach APEC HAUS. The event, hosted by the National Capital District Commission, led by the Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea, Hon James Marape MP, and Governor Hon. Powes Parkop marked the beginning of a two-day gathering of ICT ministers and heads of delegations from across the Pacific region.
The evening was inaugurated by the Prime Minister himself, accompanied by Governor Parkop, Member for Moresby North West, Hon. Lohia Boe Samuel MP, and Hon. Timothy Masiu MP, Minister for Information and Communications Technology.
Master of Ceremony, Douglas Dimagi of NBC, opened the proceedings, setting the stage for an evening of meaningful discussions and camaraderie. Hon. Lohia Boe Samuel, Member for Moresby North West, extended a warm welcome to all the Pacific Ministers of ICT and Heads of Delegations from the Pacific countries. He commended PNG’s Minister for ICT, Hon. Timothy Masiu, for his efforts in bringing together the leaders of the Pacific to collaborate on technological advancements that could shape the future of the region.
Governor Powes Parkop captured the audience’s attention with a captivating account of the significance of the Lagatoi, an ancient seafaring vessel, in the context of the meeting. The Lagatoi, a symbol of unity and cooperation, served as a reminder of the historical ties that bind the Pacific nations.
Prime Minister James Marape took the stage to share his insights on the role of ICT in transforming societies and economies. He emphasized the transformative power of technology, noting that the world had transitioned from being paper-based to a digital landscape where information and services were easily accessible. He highlighted the remarkable growth of the global GDP over the past decade, largely attributed to the rapid advancements in ICT.
“The Pacific Island together makes up 30% of airspace and sea space,” Prime Minister Marape stated, highlighting the vast potential of the region. He reiterated the theme of the event, “Smart Pacific, One Voice – Creating a better future together for the Pacific,” emphasizing the unity that binds the diverse nations of the Pacific.
Encouraging active engagement and collaboration, Prime Minister Marape underscored the impact of the dialogue, stating, “I want to encourage each and every one of you to engage in conversations, for your engagement today will shape the world and our future.” He further emphasized the importance of the Pacific region’s airspace, which serves as a hub for satellite launches and crucial transactions across various sectors.
The welcome dinner marked the beginning of a two-day meeting where ICT ministers would engage in high-level discussions in Port Moresby. Subsequent to the discussions, the ministers were scheduled to travel to New Ireland Province for a cultural village outing, strengthening the sense of camaraderie among the delegates. The event was a testament to the Pacific nations’ commitment to harnessing the potential of ICT for the collective advancement of the region.
As the Pacific ICT Ministers’ Dialogue continues to unfold, leaders are poised to discuss and strategize on ways to leverage technology for the betterment of their societies, reflecting the collaborative spirit that defines the Pacific region.