Promoting effective governance in Papua New Guinea


Governance affects virtually all aspects of a country’s prosperity. An effective public sector provides the foundations for improved service delivery, economic growth, private sector investment and trade.

Through the government-to-government linkages program, Australia is assisting PNG to build an effective public service through advisory support from Australian government officials and institutional twinning between Australia and PNG public sector counterparts .  The Pacific Leadership and Governance Precinct was established in partnership with the PNG Government and is providing training to PNG public servants and the private sector.  This is complemented by engagement of PNG champions to enable more accountable and better functioning national and sub-national governments.  The Australian Bureau of Statistics is assisting the PNG National Statistics Office to improve its governance and leadership, and the collection and release of economic data.  Support is being provided to the PNG Electoral Commission to prepare for the General Elections in 2017.  Australia also supports more effective partnerships and working arrangements between the PNG Government and the private sector, civil society, NGOs, and churches, to help meet communities’ needs.

Australia works in partnership with PNG to help achieve PNG’s long-term strategic goal of providing a safe, secure and just society for all. In 2015-16, Australia invested approximately $83.5 million in the law and justice sector – with support focused on strengthening and expanding the effective delivery of law and justice services; reducing impacts of conflict and violence at the local level; more effectively addressing family and sexual violence; and supporting stability in Bougainville. Australia also supports investments aimed at combating corruption and providing policing assistance under the PNG–Australia Policing Partnership (delivered by the Australian Federal Police).

Related initiatives

PNG Governance Facility

Up to $360 million, 2016-2020

The Papua New Guinea Governance Facility (PGF) will deliver the majority of DFAT’s governance programs in PNG from 1 July 2016.  It will deliver these activities at the national and subnational levels across five work areas:

  1. decentralisation;
  2. promoting private sector development;
  3. economic governance;
  4. citizen participation; and
  5. strengthening leadership and coalitions.

The PGF will consolidate the majority of the on-going governance projects into a single facility to realise greater coherence and coordination.  It will provide greater flexibility to respond to PNG’s complex political and operating environment.  The PGF will achieve efficiencies in aid management through the economies of scale of a single facility, improved reporting, reduced administration and a single point of contact for the governance programs in PNG.

Name of document Year published Type
PGF Design document 2015 Design

Pacific Leadership and Governance Precinct

Up to $91.65 million, 2014-2019 (funded under the PNG Governance Facility)

The goal of the Pacific Leadership and Governance Precinct (Precinct) is to support the efforts of the PNG Government to grow a new generation of public service leaders with the capability , motivation and ethical precepts to collaborate, lead and manage the delivery of government services to all citizens of PNG. Centered at the University of Papua New Guinea (UPNG) School of Business and Public Policy and the PNG Institute of Public Administration, the Precinct involves corporate management, curriculum reform, and infrastructure investments in the two organisations.  The Precinct delivers a wide range of executive-level ethics and leadership courses; certificate and diploma programs in public administration and management to public and private sector middle and senior level executives.

The Precinct involves a major partnership between UPNG and the Australian National University’s Crawford School of Business and Public Policy, and high level support from other Australian Universities and training institutions including the University of Queensland, CIT Solutions, the Australian Institute of Company Directors, the Australia-New Zealand School of Government and the Australian Public Service Commission.

Related documents*

Name of document Year published Type
The Memorandum of Understanding between the Governments of Australia and Papua New Guinea regarding the Establishment of Pacific Leadership and Governance Precinct 2014 Memorandum of Understanding

PNG-Australia Economic and Public Sector Program

$101 million, 2011-2016

The PNG–Australia Economic and Public Sector Program (EPSP) was a partnership to support the PNG public service at the national and sub-national levels to function more effectively and deliver improved services to the people of PNG. The program worked with departments and agencies to identify solutions for service delivery issues, and used a range of approaches including targeted training, small grants and specialist technical advice. The lessons learned in EPSP will be incorporated into the new economic governance programs.

Related documents*

Name of document Year published Type
Economic and Public Sector Program 2010-16 Completion report 2016 Completion report

Church Partnership Program Phase 2

Up to $50 million, 2010-2017

The Church Partnership Program (CPP) Phase 2 strengthens the institutional capacity of the seven main PNG churches to deliver services to communities. It also aims to enhance their capacity to promote good governance, through strengthening their role in policy dialogue, service delivery, and peace and reconciliation activities.  The program supports a range of activities including maternal health training for village health volunteers, HIV/AIDS education and testing services, and projects to prevent violence against women.  The CPP has been extended to 2017 while a new program is designed.  Once the design has been completed the new CPP will be incorporated into the PGF’s ‘working with civil society’ pillar for implementation.

Related documents*

Name of document Year published Type
Independent Review of two Democratic Governance Programs in PNG- Strongim Pipol Strongim Nesen and Church Partnership Program 2013 Evaluation
Independent Review of two Democratic Governance Programs in PNG—Strongim Pipol Strongim Nesen (SPSN) and Church Partnership Program (CPP)—Management response 2013 Management response

Supporting Electoral Processes in PNG

Up to $8 million, 2016-2017

Under the Electoral Support Program, Australia is partnering with the PNG Electoral Commission (PNGEC), and other PNG stakeholders, to improve the integrity of elections in PNG . Australia is working with the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) to provide a three year (2015 – 2018) electoral support program in PNG .  The Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) is also partnering with PNGEC to share its electoral expertise in a range of areas such as improving the electoral roll and the delivery of electoral training programs for PNG officials   This support is further augmented by Australian Civilian Corp (ACC) personnel deployments that are supporting the PNGEC in the lead-up to the 2017 national elections.

Related documents*

Name of document Year published Type
Independent Evaluation of Australian Electoral Assistance in Papua New Guinea 2000-2012 2013 Evaluation
Independent Evaluation of Australian Electoral Assistance in Papua New Guinea 2000-2012—Management response 2013 Management response

Strongim Pipol Strongim Nesen

Up to $119 million, 2009-2016

The aim of the Strongim Pipol Strongim Nesen (SPSN) was to improve service delivery outcomes for communities across PNG by supporting the engagement of citizens, civil society, the private sector and government in shared public decision making.  Applying and promoting democratic principles, SPSN targeted improvements in health, education, gender equity and disability-inclusive development.  The next phase of the Australia’s support for civil society partnerships will be delivered through the PGF.

Related documents*

Name of document Year published Type
Strongim Pipol Strongim Nesen six month progress report Jan-Jun 2014  2014  Progress report
Strongim Pipol Strongim Nesen: Six Monthly Progress Report January - June 2015 2015 Progress report
Strongim Pipol Strongim Nesen: Completion report 2009-2016 2016 Completion report

Provincial and Local Level Governments Program

Up to $82.59 million, 2012-2016

PNG's complex decentralised system of government means that provincial governments have significant responsibility for service delivery.  The recently completed Provincial and Local Level Governments Program (PLGP) assisted PNG to improve the financial, legal and governance framework for decentralisation, as well as improving the capacity of provincial governments, and local level governments to deliver services at the sub-national level.  The lessons learned in PLGP will be incorporated into future governance programs in PNG which will be implemented by the PGF.

Related documents*

Name of document Year published Type
Provincial and Local-Level Governments Program 2012-16 Completion Report 2016 Completion report

PNG National Museum and Art Gallery

Up to $25 million, 2014-2015 to 2017-18

A package of support to the PNG National Museum and Art Gallery includ es infrastructure upgrades, development of a long-term organisational master-plan, establishment of formal partnerships with leading Australian cultural institutions and the mounting of an exhibition to coincide with PNG’s 40th anniversary of independence celebrations. This support will enhance an important institution that conserves Papua New Guinea’s cultural traditions and history and helps shape Papua New Guinea’s national identity.

Kokoda Initiative

Up to $25 million, 2016-2020

In 2015, a new joint declaration was signed between the two governments recognising the enduring significance of the Kokoda Track region to both nations.

The Kokoda Initiative is a partnership between the Government of PNG and Australia to sustainably develop and protect the Kokoda Track and the surrounding Owen Stanley Ranges.  The Kokoda Initiative reflects the strong commitment of both governments to continue to enhance the quality of life of communities living along the track, to protect the environment, cultural values and to keep the track open and well managed.  Since 2010, Australian-funded community development activities have included:

  • construction/renovation of 15 double classrooms, 16 school staff houses, 5 health posts and 36 water and sanitation facilities;
  • training and certification of 88 elementary and primary school teachers to improve learning outcomes for over 1,900 students;
  • training, certification and equipping 96 Village Health Volunteers to provide basic health services, benefiting over 14,000 people; and
  • administration of 2,467 vaccines to children under the age of five years.

The next phase of the Kokoda Initiative will be implemented in accordance with a new Kokoda Initiative Master Plan.  DFAT will lead the next phase with the Department of Environment continuing to have a role in supporting specific activities, including seeking a joint World Heritage listing for the Kokoda Track and the Owen Stanley Ranges. 

Related documents*

Name of document Year published Type
PNG-Australia Joint Declaration on the Preservation of the Kokoda Track Region 2015 Joint declaration

Law and Justice Sector Support

Up to $167 million, 2009-June 2014 for the PNG-Australia Law and Justice Partnership (PALJP)

Up to $33 million, July 2014-December 2015 for the PALJP-Transition Program

Up to $90 million, 2016-2019 for the Justice Services and Stability for Development (JSS4D) Program

The Justice Services and Stability for Development Program (JSS4D) commenced in January 2016. It builds on more than twenty-five years of continuous Australian support to PNG’s law and justice sector - most recently under the Papua New Guinea-Australia Law and Justice Partnership (2009 to June 2014) and subsequent Transition Program (July 2014 to December 2015). This is complemented by assistance through other Australian government departments.

JSS4D activities are focused on:

  • Enhancing community safety and security
  • Addressing family and sexual violence
  • Strengthening effective law and justice services
  • Supporting anti-corruption efforts.

In addition, the program supports stability in Bougainville.

JSS4D was designed to reflect that over 80 per cent of PNG citizens live in rural areas and access justice through locally available and community justice mechanisms. A priority for Australia’s policy engagement and funding efforts is to improve the links between local level and community justice mechanisms and national agencies, to extend the authority and legitimacy of the State and create more secure families and communities.

Australia also provides law and justice funding to PNG through regional programs. These include:

  • The World Bank’s Justice for the Poor Project for East Asia and the Pacific;
  • Transparency International’s Asia-Pacific Program; and
  • United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime and United Nations Development Programme anti-corruption programs.

More information on these regional programs can be found under the Anti-Corruption and Justice Initiatives page.

Other Australian government departments also provide law and justice assistance in PNG, including the Australian Federal Police, the Attorney General’s Department, the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC) and the Commonwealth Ombudsman. Support includes a number of institutional twinning arrangements between PNG and Australian Commonwealth and State agencies, supporting capacity building and long-term people-to-people and organisational links.

Information on the performance of Australia’s law and justice program in Papua New Guinea can be found in the 2015-16 Aid Program Performance Report (APPR).

Related documents*

Name of document Year published Type
PALJP Infrastructure Impact Evaluation 2013 Independent evaluation
DFAT Management Response to the PALJP Infrastructure Impact Evaluation 2014 Management response
Papua New Guinea Justice Services and Stability for Development: Investment Design 2015 Design document
Evaluation of the RPNGC Family and Sexual Violence Units for Papua New Guinea - Australia Law and Justice Partnership: Evaluation Report 2015 Independent evaluation

Combating Corruption Project (delivered by the Australian Attorney-General’s Department and AUSTRAC)

Up to $2.5 million, 2014-2016

The goal of the Combating Corruption Project is to enhance PNG’s ability to prevent and combat corruption through hardening the PNG financial system against money laundering, corrupt activity and terrorist financing. The Project is building PNG’s capacity to analyse, investigate and prosecute money laundering and recover proceeds of crime. The project is directly assisting PNG to comply with relevant Financial Action Task Force (FATF) recommendations and meet key parts of its FATF action plan to get PNG removed from the ‘grey-list’.

Related links

* The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) is committed to high standards of transparency and accountability in the management of the Australian aid program through publishing information on our website, including policies, plans, results, evaluations and research. Our practice is to publish documents after the partner government and any other partners directly involved in the delivery of the initiative have been consulted. Not all material published on this site is created by the Australian aid program and therefore not all documents reflect our views. In limited circumstances some information may be withheld for reasons including privacy and commercial sensitivity.

Last Updated: 24 February 2017