23 Aug 2012

PNG Cabinet to consider formal Australian request on detention camp today

1:50 pm on 23 August 2012

Papua New Guinea's foreign minister is expected to submit Australia's formal request to reopen the Manus Island detention centre to cabinet today.

Australia and PNG began negotiations to reopen the facility last week after an Australian expert panel proposed it, along with a facility on Nauru, as a feasible solution to the political deadlock surrounding Canberra's desire to process asylum seekers outside of Australia.

Foreign Minister Rimbink Pato says it is very important the interests and needs of the Manus provincial and local level governments, landowners and the people of Manus and the overall interests of PNG are taken into account.

The minister says they want to ensure Manus benefits meaningfully from any employment opportunities, building and infrastructure projects and broader development assistance that might flow from the camp's establishment.