The MOU was signed by the PNG NRI Director, Dr Osborne Sanida, and DNPM Secretary Ms Hakaua Harry.

Under the MOU, the PNG NRI will assist DNPM with research and economic modelling for development planning. In particular, the partnership will utilise the PNG General Equilibrium Model (PNGGEM) as the tool for economic modelling.

The key areas of collaboration under the MOU, include:

  • Modelling input for the Medium Term development Plan 3 (MTDP 3), which is the Government’s Medium Term Development Plan for this term of Parliament;
  • Modelling work for the Annual Budget, especially development budget (as and when required);
  • Cost-benefit-analysis of major development projects (as and when required);
  • Capacity building for the two institutions, in terms of building economic modelling expertise;
  • Other areas, as agreed by the two institutions.

Using economic modelling will assist in evidence based policy formulation, analysis and informed decision making.

Dr Sanida said the partnership will ensure that the Government’s development plans for Papua New Guinea are based on a sound planning framework backed with a rigorous analysis of the data and forecasts of the key variables for the different sectors of the economy.

“It is important to provide a quantitative analysis to forecast the likely scenarios for the development plan and/or potential impacts of major development projects.” said Dr Sanida.

Since development plans are intended for the benefit of all aspects of society/economy, Dr Sanida urged all government institutions and the private sector to work together in providing data that is needed for sound development planning.

Secretary Harry said the PNGGEM had been used since 2009 to forecast Government revenue and other key variables for the period 2011 to 2015 and beyond to 2030. These forecasts were used to formulate the MTDP 2011-2015 (i.e. MTDP 1) and the PNG Development Strategic Plan (DSP) 2010-2030.

“Unfortunately, after the work on the MTDP 1 and DSP in 2009 modeling did not continue at DNPM due to capacity constraints,” Ms Harry said.

“With this MOU, NRI has the capacity to assist DNPM with this development planning aspect that has been lacking for a while.”

Harry added that the MOU also provides an opportunity for a rewarding partnership effort towards development planning in PNG as a whole.

The signing was witnessed by Deputy Secretary of DNPM, Mr Joe Aka, senior management officials of the Department, and the media, who were there to cover the occasion.