3 Oct 2005

PNG's Somare off to Australia to meet John Howard

11:30 am on 3 October 2005

Papua New Guinea's Prime Minister, Sir Michael Somare, flies to Canberra today for talks with the Australian Prime Minister.

John Howard and Sir Michael are due to discuss PNG's economic and governance challenges.

Mr Howard has said that the visit comes at an important time in the bilateral relationship and provides a valuable opportunity to discuss ways in which Australia can continue to assist Papua New Guinea.

Mr Howard said he also hoped to discuss important regional issues ahead of the Pacific Islands Forum leaders meeting which Papua New Guinea will host next month.