Consultative Implementation and Monitoring Council (CIMC) maintains dialogue with the National Maritime and Safety Authority (NMSA) and other key stakeholders to discuss ways that can improve the maritime industry in the country.
Locals and farmers in the Maritime Provinces rely on sea transport to move their produce to markets; however, they have been affected by the lack of shipping services in most areas due to the absence of safe berthing infrastructure for ships.
The lack of regular shipping services to remote areas often affects farmers whose farm produce often rot while waiting to be transported to markets.
During a meeting conducted by CIMC’s Sea Transport sub-Committee on March 24, 2022, the Committee members strongly recommended for more government-funded shipping infrastructure to be built in the Maritime Provinces.
The Committee noted that although the maritime industry has been marginalized in resource allocation while the government focused more on roads, members strongly called for even distribution and funding priority to be given to land and water transport infrastructure.
Further discussions led to the Committee proposing that the Maritime industry should have a separate ministry in order to prioritize its needs and operations and distribution of services.
The committee also proposed that Government should consider reviving the shipping corporation, which would allow ships to move into smaller ports and this would enable the Government’s freight subsidy to be broadened and maximized to benefit more people.
President of the Seafarers Association, Mr. Gehasa Gegesana, stated that PNG has the capacity to run and manage ships however the lack of appropriate berthing facilities diminished that opportunity.
He said the construction of agricultural roads and wharves and jetties should be linked to provincial governments for sustainability planning and ensuring the infrastructures are built to serve their practical purpose.