13 Mar 2009

Australian economist says PNG important market for local buisnesses

10:14 am on 13 March 2009

The Australian government's chief economist, Tim Harcourt, says Papua New Guinea is among Australia's most important countries in terms of exports.

He says 3,800 of Australia's 42 thousand exporters are trading with PNG.

PNG is only behind New Zealand which imports from 17,000 Australian companies, but is ahead of Fiji which imports from only 3,600 firms.

Mr Harcourt says will remain one of Australia's important trade partners, despite the current global financial crisis.

He says PNG could gain from its mineral resources especially gold which had had an increase in global prices.