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This study of the Mt Hagen Market was undertaken to assess the socioeconomic impact of the Mt Hagen Market Redevelopment Project that was supported by the Australia-PNG Incentive Fund. Since its completion in late 2006, the Mt Hagen Market has produced significant and positive economic and social outcomes. Impact has extended well beyond Mt Hagen and Western Highlands Province to neighbouring Highlands provinces and coastal areas. The Market provides thousands of people with income-generating opportunities in vegetable and handicraft production and marketing. The majority of these beneficiaries are women, many of whom have become the primary providers for their families and key contributors to their communities. Their social status has improved accordingly and the women reported a sense of empowerment. Despite these highly positive impacts, a lack of support services for market traders and of higher-level aspirations and prospects for young women and street youths was noted. This appeared to be linked to a lack of education and training opportunities. In addition, there are serious issues of over-crowding, law and order breakdown, sales of prohibited store goods, illegal collection and misuse of market fees, and deterioration of market facilities and market services in recent years. The last is mainly as a result of a combination of an increased demand for these services because of the PNG mining boom and of mismanagement. Our main recommendations for improving the Market’s performance include: • Separation of fresh produce from livestock and general store goods; • Separation of retail and wholesale markets for fresh produce; • Public awareness and enforcement of market rules and regulation; • Training of market operators in business skills and postharvest management; and • On-going monitoring and assessment of market management by independent third parties.


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