Author(s): Sean Dorney
Forty years after independence, Papua New Guinea is the largest single recipient of aid from Australia. Yet Australians seem to be largely ambivalent about the country. Few Australians know the history of our colonial rule in PNG and our long ties to the country are quickly being forgotten. PNG expert Sean Dorney examines PNG's weaknesses and strengths since independence and argues that, for moral and practical reasons, Australia needs to reconnect with Papua New Guinea. It is time we shed our embarrassment about our colonial past and embrace our relationship with our nearest neighbour.
Sean Dorney is a Nonresident Fellow at the Lowy Institute. After reporting on the Pacific (with a particular focus on Papua New Guinea) for over four decades, Sean left the ABC in August 2014. During his time with the ABC he won a Walkley for his coverage of the Aitape tsunami and was both deported and awarded an MBE by the Papua New Guinean Government. He is the author of Papua New Guinea: People, Politics and History since 1975 and The Sandline Affair: Politics and Mercenaries and the Bougainville Crisis.