Papua New Guinea, Indonesia Pledge Closer Collaboration in ICT

Thursday 25 April, 2024

ICT Minister Hon Timothy Masiu presenting the Draft MoU for ICT Corporation & Development to counterpart, His Excellency Mr Budi Arie Setiadi, Minister for Communication and Informatics of Indonesia.

The Minister for Information and Communications Technology Hon. Timothy Masiu, in a landmark bilateral meeting with the Minister for Communication and Informatics of Indonesia, His Excellency Mr Budi Arie Setiadi and his delegation concluded with a mutual commitment to deepen “neighborhood” cooperation in information and communications technology  (ICT).

The meeting, marked by cordiality and a shared commitment to digital advancement, saw the exchange of ideas, initiatives, and proposals aimed at fostering collaboration and mutual growth in the digital sphere.

His Excellency Mr Budi Arie Setiadi, Minister for Communication and Informatics of Indonesia, underscored the transformative impact of Digital Government on economic growth, affirming, “Embracing Digital Transformation is paramount for our nations to prosper in today’s enforcing digital landscape.”

Minister Setiadi emphasized the significance of collaboration between neighboring countries, positioning Indonesia and Papua New Guinea as potential partners in advancing inclusivity amid the digital revolution. He expressed optimism that the dialogue would pave the way for fruitful collaboration in the future.

Hon. Timothy Masiu, PNG Minister for Information and Communications Technology (ICT), extended gratitude to Minister Setiadi for accepting the request for a bilateral meet, acknowledging the strong traditional and cultural ties between the two nations.

Minister Masiu highlighted the existing bilateral frameworks and stressed the need for translating these frameworks into actionable strategies, particularly in the ICT sector.

 He outlined key policy interventions and deliverables undertaken by the PNG government, showcasing its commitment to digital transformation and cyber resilience.

Recognizing Indonesia’s progress in supporting the digital economy, Minister Masiu expressed eagerness to learn from Indonesia’s experiences, particularly in supporting Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) through innovation and incubation hubs.

He outlined PNG’s regional approach to digital transformation, citing initiatives such as the Pacific ICT Ministers Dialogue and the Lagatoi Declaration as instrumental in fostering regional cooperation.

Addressing regulatory challenges, Minister Masiu emphasized the importance of an enabling regulatory environment for ICT development.

He underscored the need for collaboration between PNG and Indonesia regulators, particularly in border management issues and radiofrequency coordination.

Minister Masiu proposed the signing of an MoU on radio frequency management to facilitate ongoing collaboration.

In infrastructure, Minister Masiu highlighted the activation of an undersea cable connecting Vanimo in PNG to Jayapura in Indonesia, emphasizing its potential to enhance trade and business between the two countries.

He sought Indonesia’s assistance in resolving operational issues related to the cable system.

Additionally, Minister Masiu discussed challenges and sought support from Indonesia in upgrading PNG’s broadcasting infrastructure, particularly in infrastructure and capacity building.

Mr. Nezar Patria, Vice Minister of Communication and Informatics of Indonesia, welcomed the collaborative spirit between the two nations, emphasizing the shared border in the Papua region.

He appreciated Minister Masiu’s initiative and pledged Indonesia’s commitment to exploring cooperation with PNG.

Vice Minister Patria assured that Indonesia would closely consider PNG’s proposals and collaborate on addressing issues such as border frequency interference.

The bilateral meeting concluded with a shared commitment of Indo-PNG ICT advancement and  development for mutual benefit.

The two counterpart Ministers expressed a shared desire for continued collaboration and proposed an engagement framework, including the drafting of an MoU to formalize cooperation in policy, regulatory, infrastructure, broadcasting, and cybersecurity domains.

Minister Masiu presented a draft MoU to  Minister Setiadi for his deliberation, and extended an invitation to his Indonesian counterpart to visit PNG, and to attend the Pacific ICT Ministerial Dialogue 2025 in New Caledonia.

The meeting exemplified a new forged commitment to brotherhood, cooperation, and mutual progress in the digital age.

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