PNG lost a forestry icon with the passing of Bob Tate

Friday 3 May 2024

Long-serving PNG forest industry leader, Bob Tate recently died in Port Moresby, aged 70, after suffering a short illness. A memorial mass was celebrated at the Koki United Church Port Moresby on 28 March 2024.

Born in Sydney, Bob Tate was well known across PNG, Australia, and the wider sector. Since 1996, Bob has been the Executive Officer of the PNG Forest Industry Association (PNGFIA) and represented the Papua New Guinea forest industry, both nationally and internationally, on all issues impacting the sector (with his signature cigarettes and rum and coke drinks). He was a member and representative on many industry groupings, including the Commonwealth Forestry Association, National Climate Change Advisory Board, National Forest Board and the ITTO Trade Advisory Group.

During 2004, Bob, along with the Curator of the National Botanical Gardens and the head of the Office of Environment and Conservation, was instrumental in establishing the National School Tree Nursery Project 'Trees for Survival'. A major revegetation project was undertaken with Port Moresby schools, which allowed school children and communities the benefit of studying environmental concerns, and, particularly, the vital role that trees play in the PNG ecosystem.

Bob Tate is survived by his family - partner Betty Oauke-Tate, the Tate brothers Allan and David, and sister Christen, and their extended families in Australia and Papua New Guinea.

Image: Presentation “Navigating a way Forward” to the Royal Institute of International Affairs (Chatham House) London, January 2011. Source PNGFIA

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