Friday 26 Apr 2019 | 06:16 | SYDNEY
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The Pacific Islands Program

A focus on Pacific Islands has been a central component of the Lowy Institute’s work for more than a decade. We research contemporary challenges facing the Pacific islands region in areas including geostrategic competition, sustainable economic development, governance and leadership challenges, poverty alleviation, and Australia’s relationship with Pacific countries and organisations. We also hold major conferences, workshops, dialogues and exchanges. We have produced influential work on Australia’s Regional Assistance Mission to the Solomon Islands, the 2006 Fiji Coup, normalising Australia’s bilateral relationship with Fiji, Australia’s bilateral relationship with Papua New Guinea, the future development challenges of Papua New Guinea, the economic benefits of greater labour mobility between Australia and the South Pacific, security and resilience dynamics in the Pacific, and foreign aid flows in the Pacific.

The Institute manages four major projects focusing on the Pacific:

The Pacific Research Program (PRP) is a consortium partnership between the Lowy Institute and the Australian National University’s Department of Pacific Affairs and Development Policy Centre, with the support of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. The PRP is designed to be a globally pre-eminent centre of excellence for research on the Pacific. More details are available here.

The Lowy Institute Pacific Aid Map is supported by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and is designed to enhance aid effectiveness in the Pacific.

The Australia-PNG Network is a project supported by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, designed to foster people-to-people links between Australia and Papua New Guinea. More details are available here.

The South Pacific Fragile States Project was a project supported by the Department of Defence to produce independent research and forward looking analysis on the key drivers of instability in the South Pacific and the associated security challenges for Australia and the wider region. More details are available here.

THE MAPPING FOREIGN ASSISTANCE IN THE PACIFIC PROJECT

The Lowy Institute Pacific Aid Map is an analytical tool designed to enhance aid effectiveness in the Pacific by improving coordination, alignment, and accountability of foreign aid through enhanced transparency of aid flows. The Pacific Aid Map has collected data on close to 13,000 projects in 14 countries supplied by 62 donors from 2011 onwards. All data has been made freely available on this interactive platform, allowing users to investigate and manipulate the information in a variety of ways. The Pacific Aid Map is supported by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

The Lowy Institute Pacific Aid map is available here.

Country profiles from Pacific Islands countries can be found here.

See the Chinese Aid in the Pacific map here.

 

 

Experts

Latest Publications

PNG's budget in urgent need of repair

Part 1 of this series on the PNG economy looked at the double dilemma of an overvalued currency and falling foreign reserves. This second and final part examines the urgent need to reset fiscal policy. When Papua New Guinea's budget for 2015 was handed down in November last year it contained many

Australia–Papua New Guinea relations: Could do better

By Jenny Hayward-Jones, Director of the Lowy Institute's Melanesia Program, and Jonathan Pryke, Research Fellow. While it's managing its response to serious economic challenges brought about by a budget deficit and drought, Papua New Guinea is preparing to host the Pacific Islands Forum leaders

Fiji's election: More to do to restore democracy

After eight years of Voreqe Bainimarama's military rule in Fiji, there is much excitement about the prospects for Fiji's return to democracy with elections next week. Seven parties and one independent candidate will contest 50 parliamentary seats. 591,095 Fijians have registered to vote; 120,000

Fiji elections: What about the economy?

During the time Fiji has been governed by the military, there has been much discussion about the impact of the political situation on economic performance. Satish Chand has argued that each coup Fiji has experienced has pushed the economy back three years, and that the aggregate erosion of the

Fiji's election: Women make their mark

By Jojiana Cokanasiga, an intern in the Lowy Institute's Melanesia Program. She is completing a Masters in Applied Anthropology and Participatory Development at the Australian National University.      Lawyers, entrepreneurs, academics and civil servants are some of the female

Pacific island leadership: PNG steps up

Jenny Hayward-Jones is Director of the Lowy Institute's Melanesia Program and Tess Newton Cain is a Nonresident Fellow at the Lowy Institute. One of the key announcements at the conclusion of the recent Pacific Islands Forum meeting in Koror, Palau was the appointment of Dame Meg Taylor as the

How Fiji outsmarted Australia

Last Friday Fijian Interim Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama began his first visit to Australia since taking power in 2006. In response to the 2006 coup, Canberra had imposed travel bans for all members of the Fijian government. These were abandoned earlier this year by the Abbott Government.

Pacific island links: Fiji special

I spent some of this week in Fiji so it is the focus of this week's links: Australia will co-lead a 14-country international observer mission to Fiji for the elections on 17 September. The Australian delegation will be led by Peter Reith. Grant Bayldon of Amnesty International (NZ) looks at what

Pacific trade: Sisters doing it for themselves

There's been a lot of talk about getting women into top positions in business in Australia, but our friends in the Pacific have been walking the walk. The inaugural Pacific Export Survey 2014 reveals that around 27% of exporting small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the Pacific are run by women,

Radio Australia cuts hurt the Pacific and Australia

Pacific Island leaders will meet at the annual Pacific Islands Forum meeting next week in Palau. Prime Minister Abbott has cancelled his travel plans in order to focus on the response to the MH17 disaster and is sending Deputy Prime Minister Truss in his stead. Pacific leaders will be disappointed

Pacific islands: Market access alone won't boost economies

Solomon Islands last week became the first country to receive approval to export timber to Australia under new guidelines on the legality of logging products. The move secures the $4 million market in Solomon Islands sawn timber exports to Australia, an industry which employs at least a thousand

MSG manoeuvres: What next for West Papua?

It hasn't taken long for the West Papua National Council for Liberation (WPNCL) and other pro-independence groups to to respond to Melanesian Spearhead Group's (MSG) recent announcement on the WPNCL's membership application, made during the MSG summit in Port Moresby. And the response can be

Melanesian leaders meet on West Papua

There is a lot going on in Port Moresby just now. People are protesting on the streets (or trying to), court cases are being adjourned, anti-corruption task forces are being disbanded and formed, final preparations are being made for the fifth Melanesian Festival of Arts & Culture. And in between

PIF: New Secretary-General will have a full agenda

At their forthcoming meeting in Palau, the leaders of the Pacific Island Forum will appoint a successor to Tuiloma Neroni Slade, the Secretary-General of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS). This is the most senior and high profile regional bureaucratic office, and strictly speaking it is

PNG: O'Neill survives, rule-of-law suffers

A remarkable 72 hours in Port Moresby has seen an arrest warrant issued for Prime Minister Peter O'Neill, the Attorney-General and Deputy Police Commissioner sacked, and PNG's anti-corruption agency, Taskforce Sweep, disbanded. Respect for the rule of law and good governance from the highest

PNG's youth speak out

The Lowy Institute's Melanesia Program convened its second PNG New Voices conference in Port Moresby yesterday. We assembled a group of interesting and passionate young people with strong views about the future of their country. They spoke on a range of topics across three key themes: Papua New

Pacific island links: PNG special

This week, the Melanesia Program team is in Port Moresby for the 'PNG New Voices' event. So this week's links are focused on PNG. The Lowy Institute's Melanesia Program, in partnership with the PNG National Research Institute, has launched its Australia-PNG network, aimed at fostering people-to-

RAMSI: How to blow $2.6 billion in a decade

A pointed joke used to do the rounds in Honiara: if you needed to call on the Australian police you could usually find them in the Lime Lounge, a swanky cafe at the west end of the main street that serves silky flat whites and a range of delights including the 'RAMSI breakfast'.  The cappuccino

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