Pacific Connect – Digital connectivity and collaborating networks

| June 12, 2018

Digital connectivity is a high priority in Papua New Guinea and the PNG government is working with the private sector to build a modern high capacity fibre-based network throughout the country. Mary Koisen, a member of the inaugural Pacific Connect Business Network Dialogue in Port Moresby, explains some of the challenges involved.

My name is Mary Koisen and I work at ExxonMobil PNG as the IT Solutions Centre Coordinator. Before joining ExxonMobil I worked across several industries in corporate entities and Government Departments. Much of my work was in corporate services to merchandising, power electrification and telecommunications in PNG.

Telecommunications in terms of voice and data has always intrigued me. The more I learn, the more eager I am to learn more. It is amazing to think that human intelligence has in so many ways exceeded our expectations. Humans have proven that our collaborative intelligence and creative powers in terms of innovation and technology for productivity enablement has accelerated far beyond our imagination.

All this innovation is intended so you and I, our communities, societies and the world can be a better place.

Yet, in PNG it is overwhelmingly unfortunate to state that irrespective of our technological advancements we are still left significantly constrained.

There are locations in Papua New Guinea that have no basic facilities or services, no road network, no transportation, no electricity, no water, no healthcare, no communication and remain totally devoid of any form of what the first world would deem absolutely necessary.

In locations where there is some form of basic infrastructure, it is often either broken down or in disrepair or the service is unreliable.

It is therefore encouraging to note that digital connectivity is a high priority in PNG and that the PNG Government in collaboration with ExxonMobil are working toward building a modern high capacity fibre based network throughout the country. Locations such as Hides, Tari, and Moro will be linked. A domestic submarine cable linking the Southern, MOMASE and the Island Regions is also proposed.

The addition of the above digital networks will have a significant impact in helping to assist in the improvement of services such as health care, education, communication and other social services which are so desperately needed in PNG.

I truly believe in being an agent of change and have always tried to help and be a part the development of the people around me and closest to me. It is a privilege to have the opportunity to work with ExxonMobil and play a part in contributing towards the greater good of PNG.

I am grateful to have been invited to share my story and my hopes for the improvement of PNG Digital connectivity and how this will transform economies and livelihoods of the PNG people.

Finally I would like to acknowledge the great initiative by Pacific Connect in facilitating collaboration between the PNG and Australian Governments by bringing a group of people together to achieve a shared outcome for the development and the betterment of our societies.

I am most grateful to be a part of that collaboration.

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Mary Koisen

Mary Koisen is the IT Solution Center Coordinator at ExxonMobil in PNG, working with local businesses to find technical solutions to their needs. She holds a Bachelor of Business Studies degree and has won a Scholarship to study in New Zealand. Her other interests include supporting the Port Moresby Nature Park.

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