Fiji’s High Commissioner to PNG, His Excellency Esala Teleni (left) with Professor Rajesh Chandra (second from left) and the PNG delegation.
A delegation from Papua New Guinea led by Fiji’s High Commissioner to PNG His Excellency Esala Teleni, visited the Vice-Chancellor and President of The University of the South Pacific (USP) Professor Rajesh Chandra at the Laucala campus on March 22, 2016 to explore collaboration opportunities.
The delegation sought areas of mutual cooperation and bilateral relations particularly in regards to university student exchanges and the development of public servants within the Gulf Provincial Government.
“We want to upgrade our workforce and we are also looking for institutions that can take care of our students to nurture them into becoming responsible citizens,” Papua LNG Project Coordinator Emmanuel Mai said.
Professor Chandra said USP has always had a good relationship with PNG and it is an important member of the Pacific Islands Forum.
He confirmed that there have been recent talks about PNG becoming a USP member country.
“At the Forum meeting in Cook Islands in 2012, Prime Minister Peter O’Neill had indicated PNG’s interest in becoming a member and we welcomed this,” Professor Chandra said.
“We would be very happy to cooperate and facilitate this further,” he added.
Professor Chandra said that USP has specialist centres like that of the Australian-funded Pacific Islands Centre for Public Administration (PICPA) which responds to the needs identified by Pacific Island Countries (PICs) for strengthened public administration to enable improved service delivery to their people and foster economic growth.
He also told the delegation that USP offers a Master in Business Administration and a Master in Public Administration for managers, executives, administrators and other professionals.
“Our strength is our quality, we also have flexible learning, we have one of the biggest IT infrastructures in the Pacific and we continue to produce confident and competent people in the region,” Professor Chandra said.
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