No-confidence vote delayed

A VOTE of no confidence in Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O'Neill has been delayed until July 22.
No-confidence vote delayed No-confidence vote delayed No-confidence vote delayed No-confidence vote delayed No-confidence vote delayed

Parliament was recalled on Friday afternoon and then adjourned to further consider the motion.

Three New Generation Party MPs have joined People's Progress Party's Ben Micah crossing the floor to join the opposition.

Radio New Zealand quoted New Generation Party's Bire Kimisopa as saying that the state of the economy and corruption allegations had caused him and his colleagues to cross the floor.

"It's a culmination of a number of things - political, social and just the complete disrespect for the rule of law and also, I think, a move by our citizens right across the country demanding that there is a change of political direction," Kimisopa said.

Meanwhile O'Neill has urged Papua New Guineans to embrace political stability.

"We are living in a very uncertain world economic environment, and we are no longer able to fully isolate Papua New Guinea from the impact of global economic conditions," O'Neill said.

"We are now a significant supplier of the LNG to meet global needs, and LNG is a commodity significantly impacted in terms of both price and demand by the downturn in international economic conditions," he said.

"In an uncertain global environment, we must maintain the unwavering political stability, and sound economic management. It is this approach that enabled our first LNG project to become operational ahead of schedule, and to be delivering high quality LNG to the markets of the world.

"The next LNG project will begin next year provided we maintain a stable political and economic environment. These factors are the number one requirement of investors in multi- billion kina projects such as Papua LNG," he said.

O'Neill added that stability and confidence would be critical for other gas and mining projects, such as the massive Frieda River project which would be one of the world's largest copper projects when completed.

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