The Kokoda Track Safety Package is a $4.9 million Australian and PNG government initiative to address a range of important infrastructure and safety issues along the Kokoda Track, for the benefit of local communities and trekkers.
In September 2009, the Australian Minister for Environment Protection, Heritage and the Arts and the PNG Minister for Culture and Tourism, announced AUD$1.8 million to begin urgent safety projects under the Kokoda Track Safety Package.
This first tranche of activities were informed by the 2009 Kokoda Track Transport Study, and the Kokoda Track Authority Track Analysis.
The two governments also began discussions on a range of safety measures that required additional technical information and further consultation with communities and industry.
On 30 March 2010, the Ministers announced the second tranche of activities and a further investment of AU$3.1 million for more major works to address safety issues along the Track.
- See the full list of activities funded under the Kokoda Safety Package
- A printable Safety Package factsheet is also available
Kokoda Transport Study
The Kokoda Track Safety Package was developed in response to the Kokoda Track Transport Study, the Kokoda Track Authority (KTA) Track Analysis and discussions with tour operators.
As part of the Kokoda Initiative, in mid 2009, the PNG and Australian governments undertook a Kokoda Transport Study to identify key transport needs of communities, service providers and the tourism industry. A priority of the Joint Understanding on the Kokoda Track and Owen Stanley Ranges includes improving access to markets and services for communities along the Kokoda Track Corridor.
The Transport Study team consulted with a broad range of stakeholders including community members, service providers, trek operators, PNG National and Provincial Government officials and non-government organisations.
The recommendations of the Transport Study considered transport needs of communities and industry, costs, technical issues and the long-term sustainability of possible actions.
- Transport needs identified by Track communities included: general mobility, access to secondary health and higher education services, easier access to markets to sell produce, and safer walking access between villages and across creeks.
- Health and education service providers' needs included: access for supervisory visits from provincial centres, village-based health and education staff travel to provincial centres, and regular re-supply of aid post kits and education materials to communities.
- Tourism industry needs focused on safer and more reliable access to the Kokoda Track via Owers Corner and the Kokoda Airstrip.
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