Washington, DC - Secretary of State John Kerry: "On behalf of President Obama and the American people, congratulations to the people of Papua New Guinea as you celebrate the 41st anniversary of your independence on September 16.
"Our two countries share a long-lasting friendship and diplomatic relations going back to your independence day 41 years ago. Throughout those 41 years, we’ve worked together on numerous issues of mutual interest in the realms of fisheries, protecting biodiversity, and economic development, among many others. In the past year alone we’ve collaborated on APEC trade and investment liberalization issues, and we look forward to continuing to work with you as you prepare for your APEC host year in 2018.
"We appreciate your leadership as the largest of the Pacific Island nations, and we’re grateful for our long, productive friendship. Please accept my best wishes on this special occasion and for the year ahead."