13 Aug 2013

NZ - PNG university deal expected to deepen ties with Melanesia

7:01 am on 13 August 2013

Wellington's Victoria University says its new agreement with Papua New Guinea's government helps New Zealand deepen its relationship with Melanesia.

A memorandum of understanding to promote educational co-operation and training in New Zealand of Papua New Guineans was signed at Victoria last week in a ceremony attended by the visiting PNG Prime Minister Peter O'Neill.

Mr O'Neill says the agreement, which enables greater numbers of PNG students to undertake doctoral studies, will help with his country's development goals.

An assistant vice chancellor at Victoria, Luamanuvao Winnie Laban, says it is important for New Zealand to grow its links with PNG

"Papua New Guinea is the queen of the region. She's the leader, she's the biggest country. She's growing in resources and that's a very important relationship and like I said, knowledge is two-way. There's also a lot of knowledge there. Imagine the linguistics, imagine the area for research in terms of science and mining let alone the school of government in terms of leadership and the tertiary sector as well."

Luamanuvao Winnie Laban