11 Jun 2013

PNG's Pato says EU needs to recognise sensitivities in trade negotiations

6:52 am on 11 June 2013

Papua New Guinea's foreign minister, Rimbik Pato, says the European Union needs to recognise areas of sensitivity in negotiating and Economic Partnership with the Pacific region.

Mr Pato, who is in Belgium representing the Pacific arm of Joint African, Caribbean and Pacific group of states, says the groups commitment to negotiations has not been matched by the EU, who seem unwilling to engage with he states.

The EU's Commissioner for Development, Andris Pieblags, has admitted it will take time for certain regions in ACP to conclude negotiations with the EU, but he says the parties will definitely find an agreement.

He says trade negotiations are never easy with these groups of countries, but he is hoping for a deal with the Pacific towards the end of the year.