19 Dec 2014

Refugee resettlement in PNG to follow jobs

2:37 pm on 19 December 2014

Papua New Guinea's Immigration department says it is looking to resettle refugees into the community along employment-based lines where possible.

No caption

Photo: AAP / Dept of Immigration and Citizenship

The first 50 refugees to be determined from over 1000 asylum seekers held at Australia's processing centre in Manus province are expected to soon enter the community.

First they will spend a period in a transit facility where the new PNG visa holders will be given cultural orientation and taught Tok Pisin.

PNG's deputy Chief Migration Officer Refugees Esther Gaegaming says they should be moved out into the community early next year despite PNG still developing its national refugee policy.

"Our thinking is that the policy will be employment based, meaning that we will focus on those who are skilled and if we can get them jobs. Then they can immediately get into those jobs as long as they are employment-ready, in terms of language and culture."

Esther Gaegaming says the jobs are likely to be in the major centres like Port Moresby and Lae.