Media Statement by Prime Minister Hon. James Marape on the occasion of K100 million presentation to Bank South Pacific for SME loans

Today I am pleased that we finally are able to release K100 million to Bank of South Pacific (BSP)  in our efforts to assist Papua New Guineans in low-cost credit finance for businesses. 
 
But firstly, I place on record our Governments’ appreciation to BSP for being an excellent development partner in our country. 
 
BSP, without compromising its fiduciary standards, has always found ways to assist Government of PNG on many fronts. 
 
This occasion is a testament to that with this type of partnership.
 
Our Government’s partnership with BSP is strategic to ensure all our people migrate to some form of businesses.  
 
This is a core policy of my Government, even before COVID-19 was an issue. 
 
We were going to invoke this policy, anyway. 
 
Government’s other people-oriented policies that are currently deployed and worked upon, include the following:
 
- Inclusive quality education including two-thirds subsidised lower education, Higher Education Loan Programme (Help) for high education, universal Flexible Open  Distance Education (FODE)  and Technical Vocational Education Training (TVET, for     SME and self-employment) for school drop outs;
- Universal quality health for all, including 22 provincial  hospitals by 2025;
- Connect PNG, with roads and modern infrastructure. especially opening rural PNG;
Cheaper electricity and  Information and Communications Technology (70% by 2025); 
-Micro Small to Medium Enterprises (MSME) interventions;
 
-Agriculture prices stabilisation fund with K50 million this year;
-Commodity freight subsidies with K40 million this year;
-Church-State partnership, especially in health, education and community-based programmes;
-Dividend policies for State companies which includes 10 per cent for community programmes to be run by a Christian Board;
-Seven per cent for future generations through Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF);
-Set up of Independent Commission against Corruption (ICAC) to fight corruption;
- Take Back PNG resources and empower local participation in our own resources harvest. This includes downstream processing of logs as well as land owner and Provincial Government participation in this;
-Downstream fisheries business to be passed to Provincial Governments  as a business option;
- Continual maintenance of good relationship with  Bougainville;
-Identifying State land for home ownership schemes; and 
-COVID efforts and fight.
 
These are most of my Government’s policy-based work programmes that we have initiated and are running. 
Today I am very pleased to witness this signing occasion that presents opportunities for our citizens and resident businesses to borrow money cheaply to refinance their businesses or start up a business.