PNG loses UN vote over failed payments

4:11 pm on 24 February 2017

Papua New Guinea has lost its vote in the United Nations General Assembly because it failed to pay its annual contributions.

 The flag of the Independent State of Papua New Guinea (centre) flying at United Nations headquarters in New York.14 July 2016 United Nations, New York

The flag of the Independent State of Papua New Guinea (centre) flying at United Nations headquarters in New York. Photo: UN/Loey Felipe

The ABC reported PNG needs to pay the UN US$138,000 to regain voting rights.

It is one of six countries whose voting rights have been suspended for non-payment, including Vanuatu.

The UN's announcement highlights recent problems with the PNG Government's payment of bills.

It comes after the state-owned electricity provider, PNG Power, cut services to the country's national parliament, Government House and several government agencies because of their failure to pay bills.

New Zealand's Foreign Minister also raised the issue of government debts to NZ companies during a recent visit.

The UN suspension comes as PNG strives to become an influential international player, with the country preparing to host the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, or APEC, meetings throughout next year.