Papua New Guinea spent $U9.5 million on 40 Maseratis and 3 Bentleys for the APEC Summit, and people are furious

MaseratiA 2019 Maserati Quattroporte GTS GranSport.

  • Papua New Guinea‘s government spent $US7 million ($AU9.55 million) on 40 Maserati and three Bentley Flying Spur luxury sedans to carry world leaders during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit, The New York Times reports.
  • Government officials said the government would recoup its investment by selling the vehicles after the summit, according to The Times.
  • Alan Bollard, APEC’s executive director, told The Times that no other APEC member had ever purchased Maserati vehicles to transport world leaders.
  • Bentley declined Business Insider’s request for comment, and Maserati did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
  • Papua New Guinea is the poorest of the 21 APEC member countries.

Papua New Guinea’s government spent $US7 million on 40 Maserati and three Bentley Flying Spur luxury sedans to carry world leaders during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit,The New York Times reports. Over $US1.3 million was reportedly spent on aircraft delivery of the vehicles.

Government officials said the government would recoup its investment by selling the vehicles after the summit, according to The Times. Alan Bollard, APEC’s executive director, told The Times that no other APEC member had ever purchased Maserati vehicles to transport world leaders.

“It’s certainly not something we were proposing,” he said.

Bentley declined Business Insider’s request for comment, and Maserati did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Bentley Flying Spur W12 SBentleyA Bentley Flying Spur W12 S.

Bryan Kramer, an opposition member of Papua New Guinea’s parliament, told The Times that the decision to purchase expensive vehicles was impractical due to the country’s underdeveloped infrastructure, which lacks a national system of paved roads. Kramer also told The Times that government officials would allow their wealthy to bypass sales taxes when buying the vehicles after the summit.

“It’s a scheme to bring the cars into the country using government funds,” Kramer said.

According to The Guardian, thousands of people in Papua New Guinea held a day-long strike in protest of the government’s purchase.


Read more: The poorest nation in the Pacific will host its richest economic get-together, and it could descend into a dash for cash.

In addition, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has said she won’t be using the luxury fleet and will instead travel by Toyota Highlander, the country’s national broadcaster TVNZ 1 reported.

The APEC summit carries high stakes for Papua New Guinea, according to Prime Minister Peter O’Neill, who has said the conference could bolster the country’s international reputation. Papua New Guinea, which is the poorest of the 21 APEC states, has struggled with government corruption and a recent polio outbreak.

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