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Japan PM to visit PNG on Australia-New Zealand tour: report

Published on Jun 19, 2014 12:05 PM

TOKYO (AFP) - Shinzo Abe will next month become the first Japanese prime minister in three decades to visit Papua New Guinea, after a huge liquified natural gas project came onstream, a report said Thursday.

Mr Abe will visit PNG as part of a tour starting July 6 that will also include visits to Australia and New Zealand, Kyodo News reported, citing a government source.

The report comes as the Pacific country emerges as a source of fuel for energy-hungry Japan, and follows the first shipment of liquefied natural gas from a landmark US$19 billion (S$23.7 billion) project in PNG last month.

During the trip, Mr Abe is expected to discuss cooperation in maritime security with his opposite numbers in the Oceanic countries, the report said.

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