Tkatchenko reassures PNG'S support to Tonga

​Sports and Tourism Minister, Justin Tkatchenko has reassured Tonga of Papua New Guinea's commitment with their preparations for the 2019 Pacific Games.

In a press conference in Tonga this week, Tkatchenko told Tonga Internal Affairs Minister,  Sosefo Fe'aomoeata Vakata that PNG will identify and assist Tonga in areas where it can.

"Three years is suitable enough time to prepare, compared to the amount of time Papua New Guinea had to prepare for the 2015 Games, and we want to be able to help start immediately," said Tkatchenko.

Tkatchenko said besides assistance with infrastructure and planning, PNG will also help Tonga athletes prepare under the High Performance Training Centre in Port Moresby.

Vakata said close dialogue between both countries over the past year in relation to Tongas preparations has given the Tongan  government great confidence.

"PNGs commitment to ongoing dialogue has granted Tonga great confidence, in that we are not alone in our road to deliver our Games.

"We acknowledge that it will not be an easy three years ahead, but we are at ease knowing that PNG is right beside us.

"PNG delivered a remarkable 2015 Games, additionally besides the world class facilities in two years, and we are thankful that we will have that experience close by," said Vakata.

The PNG delegation in Tonga includes Tkatchenko, Deputy Secretary Prime Ministers Office, Trevor Meauri and CEO of the PNG Sports Foundstion, Peter Tsiamalili.

Meetings with regards to planning and infrastructure start today.

An Investment team consisting of Hospitality and Corporate representatives will join the PNG delegation today.

Troy Taule