Exploitative large-scale mining does not deliver quality of life for PNG people

10 11 2011






by *ramunickel*




Strong economic growth and exploitative  large-scale extractive industries

do not lead to a better quality of life for people in Papua New Guinea.


This is shown by the latest Human Development Index which places PNG 153rd

out of 187 countries in the world.


Countries like Palau and Tonga which have not suffered from exploitative

large-scale logging, mining and land grabbing rank much higher at 49th and

90th respectively and are rated as high human development countries.


In the medium development category are Samoa (99), Fiji (100), FSM (116),

Kiribati (122) and Vanuatu (125).


PNG and the Solomon Islands(142) are the only Pacific countries ranked in

the lowest human development category.


Papua New Guinea has had six-years of stellar economic growth but this has

only served to benefit a small-elite and the foreign owners of PNG’s

logging, mining and oil and gas companies.


It is time for us to reject the failed unrestrained capitalism that is

being forced on us by our former colonial masters and return instead to the

National Goals in our Constitution to guide our futures.


*PNG ranks poorly in HDI survey***


*RESOURCES-rich Papua New Guinea has been ranked 153 out of 187 countries

surveyed on the Human Development Index, falling below most of its smaller

South Pacific island neighbours.

This ranking places PNG in the last of four rankings from very high human

development to low human development.

Of the nine Pacific nations included in the survey, Melanesian neighbour

the Solomon Islands shares this category but is 11 places higher at 142.

Tiny Palau, which was included in the ranking only this year, and Tonga

ranked 49 and 90 respectively. They are the only island nations that are

part of the high human development ranked countries.

Australia is second and New Zealand is fifth on the ranking.

The 2011 report, themed Sustainability and equity: A better future for all,

argues that environmental sustainability could be most fairly and

effectively achieved by addressing health, education, income and gender

disparities together with the need for global action on energy production

and ecosystem protection.

The HDI is a yardstick that focuses on the human elements of development,

combining indicators of health and education with the more traditional

economic indicators.

It normally gives important insights that can be used to identify key

development needs.

It said in PNG’s case, despite strident economic growth in the past six

years, the area of human development had largely been ignored.

Pacific Island countries have varied levels of human development.

Most of the Pacific Island countries appear in the “medium human

development” category.

These include by rank Samoa (99), Fiji (100), FSM (116), Kiribati (122) and

Vanuatu (125).

Three countries in the Pacific have higher than average life expectancy

than other small island development states.

These are Palau 64, Tonga 63 and Fiji 62 years respectively.*





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