Strengthening Papua New Guinea's Parliament Project

Project Background
The Papua New Guinea (PNG) Parliament sits at the apex of national governance. In a Westminster parliamentary system like PNG’s, the executive branch sits within the legislative branch, making parliament one of the most important sites of national discussion, debate, and action. The Bougainville House of Representatives (BHoR) plays a similar role in the Autonomous Region of Bougainville (AROB) under their regional Constitution. Recognising the critical importance of both institutions to democratic governance in PNG, this project promotes inclusive, accountable, transparent and equitable development through MPs who are supported by Parliamentary Service staff by using the powers of Parliament.
The project will also strengthen capacities of the staff of both parliaments including the engagement of the public both in PNG and ARoB in their understanding of the parliamentary processes.

Project objectives

  1. Support Members of the legislature to more effectively use their parliamentary powers to engage in debate and oversight of national development activities, in relation to critical topics such as gender equality, reducing poverty through inclusive economic development and building disaster and climate resilience through the support of Parliamentary Committees.
  2. Strengthen the capacities of Parliamentary Committees in both legislatures to undertake effective oversight of key government sectors, through transparent processes aimed at including the perspectives of communities, particularly women, into their deliberations
  3. Strengthen the capacities of key parts of the Parliamentary Service to assist their Members to discharge their mandates, in particular (i) committee secretariat staff who assist committees to do their work (ii) research and library staff who can support MPs to take effective action on key issues by keeping them well-informed; (iii) public communications and outreach staff who can work with MPs and within the Secretariat to more effectively engage the public in the work of the National Parliament; and (iv) parliamentary ICT infrastructure.

Project Outputs
Output 1: National PNG MPs empowered and supported to more effectively discharge their constitutional mandates and drive inclusive and equitable development
Output 2: Key National Parliament Committees capacitated to undertake effective oversight of proposed laws and Government activities in order to promote more inclusive and equitable development and democracy.
Output 3: National Parliament and MPs more effectively engage with the public to improve their understanding of the role of parliament in ensuring development and democracy.
Output 4: MPs of the Bougainville House of Representatives implement their lawmaking, oversight and representation mandates to in order more effectively drive inclusive and equitable development

Expected Results (in 2022)

  • At least 60% of participating MPs report some substantial increase in their knowledge + some MPs proactively asking for training on specific issues
  • Staff providing on demand research, advice and procedural support to Speaker, Clerk and MPs
  • Parliamentary Outreach strategies endorsed, and staff allocated to implement it
  • ICT review socialised with Speakers, new House Committee and Clerk & plan agreed for overhaul

Status: Active
Time Frame:
Project start date: 1 June 2022
Project end date: 31 Dec 2027
Location: PNG and ARoB
Focus Area: Peace
- Government of Papua New Guinea
- Autonomous Government of Bougainville
Partners: PNG National Parliament and Bougainville House of Representative
Donor(s): Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Budget: USD$ 9,480,915.00
Velea Vagi
Governance Team Leader (a.i.)
Tel: 321 2877

The project will also strengthen capacities of the staff of both parliaments including the engagement of the public both in PNG and ARoB in their understanding of the parliamentary processes.