Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Papua New Guinea(PNG) on May 21, 2023, as a part of his Indo-Pacific tour, marking the first-ever visit by an Indian Prime Minister to the country.
During his visit, he hosted the third summit of the Forum for India-Pacific Islands Cooperation (FIPIC) alongside Prime Minister James Marape. The meeting between the two leaders in Port Moresby focused on strengthening their partnership across various sectors, including trade, investment, health, information technology, climate action and promoting people-to-people ties. Prime Minister Modi expressed his support for the Pacific Island nations' priorities and aspirations.
The two leaders unveiled a translation of the Tamil classic ‘Thirukkural’ into the Tok Pisin language of Papua New Guinea. The book, co-authored by linguist Subha Sasindran and Sasindran Muthuvel, Governor of West New Britain Province, received praise from Prime Minister Modi for its contribution to preserving Indian thought and culture in Papua New Guinea.
At the FIPIC summit, Modi unveiled a comprehensive plan to bolster healthcare and development in the Pacific island countries. He also announced several initiatives, including the establishment of a super-speciality cardiology hospital in Fiji, fully funded by India, along with the provision of dialysis units and sea ambulances in all 14 Pacific island nations.
To mark the significant visit, Modi was honoured by Governor-General Bob Dadae of Papua New Guinea, who presented him with the Companion of the Order of Logohu. The prestigious award acknowledged PM Modi's efforts in championing the unity of Pacific Island countries and leading the cause of the Global South. The former US President Bill Clinton has been among the previous recipients of this award.
The FIPIC III Summit, attended by leaders from all 14 Pacific Island Countries, showcased Prime Minister Modi's enthusiasm. Launched by Prime Minister Modi in 2014, FIPIC aims to address shared challenges such as climate change, sustainable development, capacity building, and economic development.