Following the eruptions of volcanoes Tavurvur and Vulcan in 1994, the capital of East New Britain in PNG was moved from Rabaul and re-established in the former district headquarters of Kokopo.
Kokopo has consolidated its status as the regional centre for the New Guinea islands region and is the entrepoint for the four island provinces of PNG. It is the financial, business and major education centre for the islands region.
The town enjoys a progressive and modern development, but as a fast growing ULLG it faces many challenges that relate to its capacity to deliver services and manage urban growth. Many services that should be managed by the Kokopo/Vunamami ULLG are not owing to capacity constraints. Priority areas for the ULLG include:
- Institutional capacity building and training including IT;
- Corporate planning
- Improving waste management systems
- Urban landscaping and town beautification
- Review of the urban development plan.
The District Council of Mt Barker (SA) is currently engaged in a scoping mission.