29 Aug 2012

PNG's PM will raise a regional immigration processing centre at Forum

4:20 am on 29 August 2012

Papua New Guinea's Prime Minister, Peter O'Neill, says he will raise the issue of a regional immigration processing centre at this week's Pacific Island Forum leaders meeting.

Papua New Guinea and Nauru are both getting facilities ready for the offshore processing of asylum seekers for Australia.

Mr O'Neill says this isn't an issue just for Australia, but also illegal immigrants to the island countries.

"We do not have the surveillance and structures to be able to deal with it. So, a processing centre as such may be able to facilitate for that and we will look forward to working closely with the Australian government, and hopefully this becomes a regional processing centre in the near future."

Peter O'Neill says the opening of the Manus Island asylum centre will be up to the Australian government, but a lot of work needs to be done on the infrastructure.