9 May 2007

NZ aid for Papua development programme

7:45 am on 9 May 2007


New Zealand is to contribute 1.5 million US dollars to the United Nations Development Programme in the Indonesian province of Papua.

New Zealand's Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced the aid package after meeting his Indonesian counterpart Hassan Wirajuda in Jakarta today.

Mr Peters says Papua is one of the least-developed regions in Indonesia, with 39 per cent of the population living in poverty.

He says infant and child mortality rates are worryingly high, while access to clean water and adequate sanitation, and to primary and secondary education is extremely limited.

Mr Peters described the aid package as a substantial addition to New Zealand's existing involvement in development work in Papua.

He says it underlines New Zealand's commitment to working with Indonesia to improve social and economic development there.

New Zealand's contribution to the UNDP-led 'People Centred Development' programme will be managed by NZAID, the government's aid agency.