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Good morning Everyone. 

Welcome to the Kina Bank Prime Ministers Breakfast and thank you for joining us.  A warm welcome and hearty congratulations on his election victory to our distinguished guest –  the Honourable Mr James Marape, Prime Minister of PNG.

Welcome also to Ministers of Parliament and all members of our business community who have joined us here today.

Kina Bank is proud to sponsor this breakfast and I’d like to thank the Business Council of PNG for the opportunity to partner with them over the past 6 events. We see it as a fundamental part of our role in the broader nation-building agenda, enhancing connectivity within the business community.  I would like to take this opportunity to begin with some of Kina Bank’s recent key milestones and our aspirations for the future.

Kina Bank’s ‘Always First’ commitment to delivering market-leading products and services continues in 2022.  Over the past 2 years, we’ve focused on providing existing and new SME customers with over PGK500 million in loans, providing reductions in online banking fees whilst making improvements to both our corporate and online banking services.

For our consumer customers, we have introduced “fee-free” banking when using Kina EFTPOS terminals, launched a market-leading PGK2,000 cashback campaign for home loan customers as well as reducing our online banking fees. A first for PNG was the launch of “Single View in June. This product enables our customers to view their super balance online.

We continue to strive to change the financial services landscape in PNG by making banking more competitive, accessible and easier to understand.  This has always been, and continues to be, our aim.

Kina Bank is steadfast in our support of SME growth and the Government’s vision, to grow small businesses from 50,000 to 500,000 by 2030. We recognise to achieve our purpose of creating prosperity for our communities we need a vibrant SME sector to provide growth all across the country. 

Our contribution continues to be strong and includes:

  • Expanding our distribution footprint by employing additional Business Advisors in regional areas growing our lending direct to regional PNG,
  • Focussing on the agricultural sector with a goal of helping across the entire supply chain,
  • Branch expansion to reflect end-to-end solutions, focusing on providing financial services leadership in the community of key provincial centres. Our current plans will include commercial banking centres in Lae, Mt Hagan, Kokopo, Goroka, and Madang.

In 2022, we’ve delivered smart and innovative partnerships that will help support our SME customers through the challenges of running a small business.  

A good example of this is a working capital facility for SMEs where we have partnered with Business Link Pacific (BLP) to deliver capital via SME loans using our expertise.  We will deepen our partnership with Business Link Pacific, to connect small and medium sized businesses to an extensive network of local advisory services. 

We’ve also recently launched the Kina Xero Bank Feed.  Xero is a global leading provider of cloud based business software applications allowing SMEs to seamlessly manage their business and finances.    Kina Bank is the first bank in PNG to provide for electronic transfer of transactional bank data into the Xero accounting platform at the touch of a button – massively increasing efficiencies for SMEs.  We will further work with Xero to leverage their extensive range of applications specifically aimed at SMEs, providing solutions that are relevant to PNG, and bringing the best of the world to the doorsteps of SMEs locally.   These two partnerships will make banking and running businesses easier for all SMEs in PNG who are part of the Kina Bank family.   

On the digital front, our ‘Always First’ approach has us rapidly moving towards ‘Electronic Know Your Customer’ and further digital onboarding solutions for home loan and SME customers, reducing the necessity for our customers to visit a branch, whilst still maintaining strong customer service values.  

Financial inclusion remains a challenge; and is one of the biggest structural issues facing the PNG economy and at Kina Bank, we aim to address this.  Our partnership with MiBank has allowed Kina to reach over 650,000 customers across our nation. This partnership continues to demonstrate our commitment to making banking more accessible in PNG.  To this point, we’ve been delighted with how the model has started to work with the recently opened co-branded branch in Alotau. 

As we head into 2023, the ambitious growth plans for Kina Bank are well on track. As a Papua New Guinean company our commitment to  to the country, our digital mindset, and driving growth in our core businesses of banking and wealth management will see Kina Bank make a valuable contribution to supporting the economy of this great nation.

We’re committed to playing our part in constantly improving the prosperity of the people, communities and markets we serve. And with the business communities support “together it’s possible”.

And finally, to our new government. Following completion of the elections, we look forward to the implementation of the government reform agenda and in particular welcome the continued focus on SME growth and sectors such as the agricultural sector, manufacturing and others that will help to deepen our economy and support sustainable communities throughout Papua New Guinea.  

I would like to use three words to sum up what I believe the business community would like to see – these are Consistency, Commitment and Confidence. 

Consistency of policies and consistency of an approach that is welcoming to investment, positive change and development. 

Commitment to execute and deliver, commitment to back up plans with actions and commitment to stay the course as sometimes commercial reality does not work hand in hand with shorter term political goals. 

Lastly Confidence.  Business confidence is clearly stronger then it has been at any time in the last few years.  It eventually leads to more investment, more employment and more growth.  However, confidence is also fragile. The consistency of and commitment to policies is the best method to maintain and increase confidence, which will lead to growth.

Thank you for being with us today and I would now like to introduce the main speaker to address us.  Please welcome Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea the Honourable Mr James Marape. 

Thank you.