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Media Releases

CEFI Launch New Website

The Centre for Excellence in Financial Inclusion launched its new revamped website on Wednesday July 12 marking a very important milestone for the organization’s marketing and communication. The new CEFI website can be found at https://www.thecefi.org/

CEFI Executive Director Mr. Garima Tongia after launching the new CEFI website emphasized on the importance of a website saying it is the main tool of communication, marketing and awareness in organizations.

“A revamped, revitalized and brand website is very important for CEFI because it will educate people who want to know more about CEFI and also do business with us,” Mr. Tongia said.

“At CEFI we realize the importance of having a website that is simple, efficient, user friendly and incorporating key features of style and must remain modern and current,” he added.

“It took us three years to finally complete the project and thank you SNS Tech for your patience with us and for finally delivering our new website.”

Mr. Jacob Segodi from SNS Tech, who gave a brief on the overall project, thanked CEFI for engaging SNS Tech to develop CEFI’s website adding they were happy that the project was a success and will continue to work with CEFI on the website.

The Executive Director highlighted other important cutting edge technology projects also that CEFI is currently undertaking and promoting on its website apart from its other core functions.

Some of these projects include, Business Link Pacific, Ledger Pal Application, Market for Village Farmers project, Inclusive Green Finance Project and the World Bank on Child Nutrition programme.

“These are some of the projects CEFI is involved in that people don’t know about that is why a new improved and reinvigorate website is important to market and communicate these projects,” he said.

“We will continue to update from time to time to reflect the changes that are happening and I’m certain SNS Tech will be happy to work with us,” Mr. Tongia said.

The CEFI website has undergone a number of developments and the current website is built on WordPress platform and page builder application.

Discussions on redeveloping and revamping the CEFI website started in 2021 while diagnostic work started in 2022 around reviewing of website pages by CEFI managers and the Executive Director, which cumulated into the signing of a service agreement between CEFI and website developer SNS Tech in 2023 and start of the project.

The focus of the project was on website revamp, redesigning and search engine optimization.

The CEFI Website team undertook two separate trainings delivered by SNS Tech to administer the front end of the website.

Media Releases

Business Link Pacific, the Centre for Excellence in Financial Inclusion and the Lae Chamber of Commerce announce new Business Support Grants for the private sector in Papua New Guinea

Business Link Pacific, the Centre for Excellence in Financial Inclusion and the Lae Chamber of
Commerce announce new Business Support Grants for the private sector in Papua New Guinea
06 July 2023

Business Link Pacific (BLP), a private sector development programme delivered by DT Global and funded by the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT), has announced the availability of new Business Support Grants for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs) in Papua New Guinea. “Aotearoa New Zealand is pleased to continue our support for Business Link Pacific. As I get around and meet businesses and chambers of commerce, I have heard how much Business Link Pacific is valued in Papua New Guinea. And these Business Support Grants will help businesses here invest in and grow
their operations, creating jobs and economic benefits for local communities”, said Peter Zwart, New Zealand High Commissioner to PNG

The Business Support Grants are designed to stimulate SME growth, innovation, access to finance, and investment in social inclusion and climate action. SMEs in Papua New Guinea can present proposals that
meet the criteria of at least 1 of the following 5 categories:

• Innovation: grant will be used to drive innovation within the business.

• Growth: grant will used to drive business growth.

• Inclusion: grant will be used to increase inclusiveness within and by the business.

• Climate: grant will mitigate, adapt, or increase resilience to climate change.

• Finance: grant will be used to secure additional finance e.g., equity for a loan.

To apply, businesses must submit a proposal that outlines the project they are proposing to undertake, the expected outcomes of the project, and the financial resources they are seeking. Proposals will be
evaluated based on their alignment with at least 1 of the 5 grant categories mentioned above, as well as the feasibility of the project, the sustainability of the project, and the quality of the proposal.
Grants will be awarded based on business size and other factors. As a guide, businesses with up to 5
employees are eligible for grants up to NZD 5,000 equivalent (11,000 PGK), and businesses with up to 10 employees are eligible for up to NZD 10,000 equivalent (22,000 PGK). Businesses with 20 employees or more can apply for grants up to NZD 20,000 equivalent (44,000 PGK). Businesses with up to 50 employees can apply for grants up to NZD 30,000 equivalent (66,000 PGK). BLP encourages applications from women, youth, indigenous entrepreneurs, and community-led
businesses. Guidelines and full criteria can be found on the BLP website. https://businesslinkpacific.com.
The Centre for Excellence in Financial Inclusion and Lae Chamber of Commerce will assist with the submission of applications. SMEs that require assistance to access the internet or computers should
contact them to be supported. “We are excited to announce the availability of these new Business Support Grants, to support local
businesses with their innovation and growth projects. We know that grants can boost SMEs capacity to access finance, increase employment and invest in critical issues such as climate resilience,” said Steve Knapp, director of BLP. “The growth and empowerment of MSME is critical to the country. Unemployment is high and our people
want to learn how to run a business successfully and profitably. The BLP programme is one of real sustainability, not only providing support to SMEs but to business service providers, who are also local
business, that have not only local knowledge but continue to work with, mentor and develop our SMEs into more robust businesses. There is not a business in the world that started out ‘big’, all businesses
start small and with the right attitudes, support and guidance grow into big and successful businesses.

We applaud and support BLP as truly a circular, sustainable model and are pleased to be part of it,” said the president of Lae Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), John Byrne. The Advisor to Centre for Excellence in Financial Inclusion Mr. Saliya Ranasinghe said, “There is an increasing recognition of the importance of SMEs in supporting overall economic growth. According to a recent survey of nearly 50,000 firms in 104 countries, SMEs provide as much as two-thirds of all employment, with small firms contributing more to employment in low-income countries than highincome countries.”

Further information:
Enquiries about this news release should be made to the BLP Service Managers- Ensie Rennie lae@businesspacific.com, Gabriel Iso png@businesslinkpacific.com and Adelle Auhava cefi@businesslinkpacific.com

About Business Link Pacific:
BLP is a private sector development programme funded by the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and aimed at supporting the economic growth of Pacific Island countries.

The Business Link Pacific team is based in New Zealand and is currently supported by in-country partners in Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Vanuatu. BLP is extending its services to Nauru, Niue Tokelau and Tuvalu.

Since Business Link Pacific was established in 2017, it has assisted over 6,500 small-medium sized businesses with online Business Health Checks, Continuity Plans and in-depth diagnostics. Also, it has facilitated over 2,000 business advisory services subsidies, nearly 600 business grants and contributed to the creation of an estimated 1,300 new jobs; 41% of which are filled by women.

Case studies and stories about the business talent in the PICs have been captured and shared with the Business Link Pacific audience both in New Zealand and across the Pacific Region, and can be accessed via the Business Link Pacific website.

Business Link Pacific in Papua New Guinea is coordinated by the Lae Chamber of Commerce and Centre for Excellence in Financial Inclusion. It has a quality approved Network of 47 business advisors offering services in 15 areas of business advice, including accounting, marketing, HR, business strategy, training, and couching. Approved business advisors can offer subsidies to eligible local SMEs to partially cover service fees. BLP has provided 209 subsidies in Papua New Guinea, 127 to businesses with one or more female owners and 31 Adaptation Grants for a total value of 267,470 NZD (587,038.71 PKG).

BLP is adding another important element for the SME support eco system in Papua New Guinea. Centre for Excellence in Financial Inclusion is extremely pleased to be part of this important support structure that facilitate growth and prosperity. We encourage SMEs to use this opportunity to improve and grow entrepreneurship, skills and access to credit and markets.

Lae is known as the commercial hub of Papua New Guinea, contributing immensely to the economy of the country. The Lae Chamber of Commerce promotes the economic viability of local small businesses to develop, grow and contribute equally to the economy. Through the partnership with Business Link Pacific has given the opportunity for our local SMEs throughout Papua New Guinea to benefit from the BLP services including the grant, for the sustainability of their business operations.

Media Releases




The Inclusive Green Finance Policy was officially launched today at the Hilton Hotel in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea. The ceremony was presided over by the Rt. Honorable Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea, James Marape, who expressed his honor in inaugurating this significant policy. The Prime Minister encouraged government departments, state-owned enterprises, financial institutions, and MSMEs to collaborate and utilize this policy as a foundation for building a green business economy.

In his address, the Prime Minister stated, “Today, we celebrate the establishment of the Green Finance Policy by the Bank of PNG, which I believe is the first of many steps toward transitioning Papua New Guinea from a high-carbon economy to a sustainable and blue economy.”

Mr. Marape emphasized the policy’s importance in addressing climate change and how it will benefit the people of Papua New Guinea. He stressed the need to develop the country’s economy in a smarter and climate-resilient manner, fostering low-carbon, inclusive green growth.

“While we are currently on a high-carbon development trajectory, which has proven beneficial for our economy and supporting our rapidly growing population, we must acknowledge that the detrimental effects of climate change are accelerating. This necessitates a shorter timeframe for us to enjoy the benefits of our current pathway,” said the Prime Minister.

The Prime Minister expressed gratitude to the Bank of Papua New Guinea, the Global Green Growth Institution (GGGI), the New Zealand Highland Commission, financial institutions, and other technical and development partners for their collaboration in designing and developing the Inclusive Green Finance Policy.

“I am delighted to announce that this policy is being unveiled alongside the Bank of PNG’s own Financial Inclusion Strategy, introduced in April this year. This visionary product represents a long-term commitment to Papua New Guinea,” he added.

The Prime Minister commended the Green Taxonomy, a unique feature of this policy, which is the first of its kind in the Pacific and Papua New Guinea. He congratulated the Acting Governor of the Bank of PNG and the development partners for their contribution to establishing this crucial tool and service for the benefit of the people.

“The Inclusive Green Finance Policy serves as a reminder for all of us to conduct our business in an environmentally conscious manner. By offsetting our global and PNG carbon footprints and participating in the conservation of PNG’s tropical rainforest and mangroves, we can mitigate the impacts of climate change,” emphasized the Prime Minister.

Ms. Elizabeth Genia, Acting Governor of the Bank of Papua New Guinea, underscored the significance of embracing green finance and adopting a proactive approach to address environmental risks and invest in projects that promote long-term sustainability.

The Acting Governor emphasized the responsibility of financial institutions to integrate environmental and social factors into their investment decision-making processes. She encouraged the development of innovative financial products, such as green bonds and sustainability-linked loans, to facilitate green investments.

“To support financial institutions in this important journey, the Bank of PNG, in collaboration with its partners, will establish a Green Finance Center at the CEFI office. The center will provide necessary support, including staff training, technical assistance, and the design of innovative green lending products,” stated Mrs. Genia.

Mr. George Awap, Assistant Governor of the Financial System Stability Group at the Bank of PNG and Chairman of the Inclusive Green Finance Steering Committee highlighted the policy’s development and the discussions surrounding the impact of climate change on economics.

Mr. Awap provided a brief overview of the journey toward implementing the Inclusive Green Finance Policy in Papua New Guinea. He mentioned that the Bank of PNG engaged the Global Green Growth Institution (GGGI) through a bidding process, and the Agriculture for Finance (AFC) was involved in developing the concept note, funded by the New Zealand Government.

He further explained that a steering committee, chaired by the Bank of PNG and consisting of representatives from the Office of Climate Change, Department of Treasury, Alliance for Financial Inclusion, NZHC, and GGGI as observers, worked collaboratively to develop the Inclusive Green Finance Taxonomy Policy.

“Inclusive Green Finance is a new concept in the region, requiring extensive collaboration between the Bank of PNG, domestic financial institutions, various ministries, and stakeholders,” concluded Mr. Awap.

The launch of the Inclusive Green Finance Policy marks a significant milestone for Papua New Guinea, demonstrating its commitment to building a sustainable and environmentally friendly economy and fulfilling the international commitments to the Alliance for Financial Inclusion under El Sheikh Accord. Through collective efforts, the government and financial institutions aim to steer the country towards a low-carbon, inclusive green growth pathway and address the challenges posed by climate change.

For media inquiries, please contact:

Centre for Excellence in Financial Inclusion (CEFI) Ground Floor, Credit Corporation Building, Cuthbertson Street.

Postal Address: PO Box 1692, Port Moresby, National Capital District, Papua New Guinea Phone: (675) 322 5300 Email: info@thecefi.org Media Enquiries: lomaro@thecefi.org

Office Hours Monday – Friday: 0800 – 1630, except for public holidays.



CEFI graduates trainees in financial literacy

CEFI for the first time issued student identification numbers to its graduating trainees for the purpose of accessing a financial literacy application that CEFI is developing and planning to launch soon.
Head Trainer Jill Pijui made the announcement during presentation of certificates for 19 participants in a week long EOI (Expression of Interest) Training of Trainers Training.
“We will be doing back tracking of all our trainees whether Retail Training or Training of Trainers for the mass issue of student ID numbers,” Ms. Pijui said.
Ms. Pijui explained that CEFI is in the process of developing a financial literacy application (FL App) where these FL App will act as a reminder tool for the 250,000 trainers trained by CEFI.
“The FL App will remind the trainees to do their savings plan, banking, basic household budget, tracking of income and expenses and cash flow training, all these topics were covered in their respective training,” Ms. Pijui added.
In order to access the FL App, Ms. Pijui explained that all trained trainers will have to have a student ID number in order to access the application.
The 19 participants from the EOI Training of Trainers trainees were also the first batch to receive their student ID at the end of their training.
The EOI Training of Trainers training saw 14 female participants among among 19 trainees to be certified as trainers to train financial literacy in their respective communities.
Both employed and SME training providers attended the training from Monday, May 08th to 11th, which comprised of two women from the Autonomous Region of Bougainville, a participant each from Wewak and Enga while the rest of the trainees were from Port Moresby.

The role of CEFI in enabling top tier transparency and Financial inclusion in Papua New Guinea and the South Pacific

The Centre for Excellence in Financial Inclusion (CEFI) can play a significant role in enabling top-tier transparency and financial inclusion in Papua New Guinea (PNG) and the South Pacific. Here are some ways in which CEFI can intervene to achieve this:

  1. Promoting financial literacy: CEFI can promote financial literacy among individuals and communities to help them make informed decisions about their finances. This includes providing educational materials and training sessions on financial concepts and practices, such as budgeting, savings, and investment strategies. By improving financial literacy, CEFI can help individuals and communities understand the importance of transparency and financial inclusion.
  2. Developing financial products and services: CEFI can work with local financial institutions to develop financial products and services that are accessible and affordable for individuals and communities in PNG and the South Pacific. These products and services can be tailored to meet the specific needs of the local population and can help promote financial inclusion by providing access to credit, savings, and insurance.
  3. Encouraging financial institutions to adopt best practices: CEFI can work with financial institutions to encourage them to adopt best practices in terms of transparency and accountability. This includes promoting the use of technology to enhance transparency and reduce the risk of fraud, as well as implementing robust internal control systems to ensure that financial transactions are properly recorded and monitored.
  4. Conducting research: CEFI can conduct research on financial inclusion and transparency in PNG and the South Pacific to identify gaps in knowledge and areas where interventions are most needed. This research can inform the development of policies and strategies to promote financial inclusion and transparency.
  5. Collaborating with stakeholders: CEFI can collaborate with stakeholders, including government agencies, civil society organizations, and the private sector, to promote financial inclusion and transparency in the region. By working together, stakeholders can leverage their expertise and resources to achieve common goals.

Overall, CEFI can play a critical role in promoting financial inclusion and transparency in PNG and the South Pacific. By improving access to financial services, promoting financial literacy, and encouraging best practices among financial institutions, CEFI can help ensure that individuals and communities in the region can participate fully in the economy and achieve their financial goals.


CEFI intervention in providing financial literacy for the grass roots in Papua New Guinea

the Centre for Excellence in Financial Inclusion, can play a significant role in providing financial literacy for the grass roots in Papua New Guinea (PNG). Financial literacy is crucial for individuals and communities to make informed decisions about their finances, including managing their income, savings, investments, and debt.

Here are some ways in which CEFI can intervene in providing financial literacy for the grass roots in PNG:

  1. Developing educational materials: CEFI can develop educational materials such as brochures, posters, and videos that explain financial concepts and practices in a simple and accessible manner. These materials can be distributed in schools, community centers, and other public places to reach a wide audience.
  2. Conducting training sessions: CEFI can conduct training sessions for community leaders, teachers, and other influencers who can then pass on their knowledge to the wider community. These sessions can cover topics such as budgeting, savings, and investment strategies, and can be tailored to meet the specific needs of the local community.
  3. Offering financial counseling: CEFI can offer financial counseling services to individuals and families who need help managing their finances. These services can include one-on-one sessions, group counseling, and online resources.
  4. Providing access to financial services: CEFI can work with local financial institutions to provide access to financial services such as savings accounts, loans, and insurance products. By helping individuals and families access these services, CEFI can improve their financial stability and resilience.
  5. Conducting research: CEFI can conduct research on financial literacy and financial inclusion in PNG to identify gaps in knowledge and areas where interventions are most needed. This research can inform the development of educational materials, training programs, and other interventions.

Overall, CEFI can play an important role in improving financial literacy and promoting financial inclusion in Papua New Guinea. By providing individuals and communities with the knowledge and tools they need to manage their finances, CEFI can help promote economic growth and development in the region.

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