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May 20, 2024
Papua New Guinea DataCo and Oracle have signed a memorandum of understanding to advance the country’s critical digital infrastructure and to introduce world-class cloud infrastructure through the Oracle Alloy product. The MOU was signed on May 10th in Port Moresby as Information and Communication technology Minister Timothy Masiu welcomed Oracle Corporation into PNG to support the government's digital transformation agenda. Mr.  Masiu congratulated DataCo for this initiative and welcomed the signing of the MOU. He said the world re-known company Oracle, specializing in cloud technology has offered to invest in critical digital infrastructure in Papua New Guinea. "I met with PNG Dataco and Oracle officials this week and am impressed with what they can bring in including training and capacity building and to work with PNG DataCo to strengthen and expand their digital infrastructure to support the overall government digital transformation agenda." Mr.  Masiu encouraged PNG DataCo and Oracle to continue working in partnership with the Department of Information and Communication Technology as the department under the Digital Government Act 2022 is managing a "whole-of-government" approach to delivering cloud technology services. The Department has advanced design and development of various critical e-government services including single sign-on to digital services and the eGovernment Portal, he said. Mr.  Masiu urged government entities to work with DICT, DataCo and Oracle to make this partnership feasible through providing required information and data to plan, tailor and customize their infrastructure and technical skills and build rollout plans in line with DICTt s framework and road map. "Our people desperately need digital services made simple, fast, and easy. With our geography and terrain, services are hard to reach our people but there are certain services that can be offered digitally and this is what the government envisions through the Digital Transformation Policy. We are ambitious in this endeavor as we head towards our silver jubilee in 2025." PNG DataCo Limited are keen for Papua New Guinea’s communications infrastructure and the future of connectivity. PNG DataCo Limited CEO, Paul Komboi, GCL, OBE, made a presentation on Papua New Guinea’s communications infrastructure and the future of connectivity in the region at the Innovation PNG 2023, held at APEC Haus, Port Moresby on 10 November 2023. He discussed the PNG Communications Market Snapshot, Supporting PNG’s Digital Ecosystem, DataCo Digital Infrastructure Plan, alignment with GoPNG’s MTDP-IV, Key Programs, and other innovative programs. This is the next step Dataco is taking in supporting PNG’s future in digital connectivity.
May 20, 2024
Papua New Guinea DataCo and Oracle have signed a memorandum of understanding to advance the country’s critical digital infrastructure and to introduce world-class cloud infrastructure through the Oracle Alloy product. The MOU was signed on May 10th in Port Moresby as Information and Communication technology Minister Timothy Masiu welcomed Oracle Corporation into PNG to support the government's digital transformation agenda. Mr.  Masiu congratulated DataCo for this initiative and welcomed the signing of the MOU. He said the world re-known company Oracle, specializing in cloud technology has offered to invest in critical digital infrastructure in Papua New Guinea. "I met with PNG Dataco and Oracle officials this week and am impressed with what they can bring in including training and capacity building and to work with PNG DataCo to strengthen and expand their digital infrastructure to support the overall government digital transformation agenda." Mr.  Masiu encouraged PNG DataCo and Oracle to continue working in partnership with the Department of Information and Communication Technology as the department under the Digital Government Act 2022 is managing a "whole-of-government" approach to delivering cloud technology services. The Department has advanced design and development of various critical e-government services including single sign-on to digital services and the eGovernment Portal, he said. Mr.  Masiu urged government entities to work with DICT, DataCo and Oracle to make this partnership feasible through providing required information and data to plan, tailor and customize their infrastructure and technical skills and build rollout plans in line with DICTt s framework and road map. "Our people desperately need digital services made simple, fast, and easy. With our geography and terrain, services are hard to reach our people but there are certain services that can be offered digitally and this is what the government envisions through the Digital Transformation Policy. We are ambitious in this endeavor as we head towards our silver jubilee in 2025." PNG DataCo Limited are keen for Papua New Guinea’s communications infrastructure and the future of connectivity. PNG DataCo Limited CEO, Paul Komboi, GCL, OBE, made a presentation on Papua New Guinea’s communications infrastructure and the future of connectivity in the region at the Innovation PNG 2023, held at APEC Haus, Port Moresby on 10 November 2023. He discussed the PNG Communications Market Snapshot, Supporting PNG’s Digital Ecosystem, DataCo Digital Infrastructure Plan, alignment with GoPNG’s MTDP-IV, Key Programs, and other innovative programs. This is the next step Dataco is taking in supporting PNG’s future in digital connectivity.
May 20, 2024
The Papua New Guinea Chamber of Resources and Energy (PNG CORE) has reiterated its stand in support of building a refinery in the country that the state must build through Kumul Minerals Holdings Limited. Kumul Minerals has the financial and technical capacity to undertake gold refining in PNG, the Chamber said in a statement. Anthony Smaré, PNG CORE President, highlighted the financial and technical capabilities of Kumul Minerals during an information briefing to the business community on May 9 at the University of Papua New Guinea in Port Moresby. He questioned the preference given to Refinery Holdings Limited of Singapore, citing the firm’s lack of financial resources, gold industry experience, and technical capacity. Referring to a report obtained by PNG CORE, Smaré pointed out that Refinery Holdings' last financial results, filed in June 2023, indicated a company worth approximately $20 million. He questioned why a company with no track record in gold refining and negative financial standing would be favored over PNG’s own Kumul Minerals Holdings Limited, which boasts significant investments and expertise in the gold industry. With existing investments in gold through Ok Tedi and Porgera and a net worth exceeding 8 billion Kina, Kumul Minerals is also staffed by Papua New Guinean professionals with extensive experience in the sector, Smare noted. The company is also engaged in feasibility studies with Ramu Nico for the development of a base metals smelter, aligning with its mandate to enhance the country's mining capabilities. Smaré emphasized that a new gold refinery, with a capacity to process 3 million ounces of gold, could be constructed in either Lae or Port Moresby for an estimated cost of K60 million, well within Kumul Minerals' financial capacity. Despite the traditionally thin margins in the gold refining business, Smaré expressed confidence in Kumul Minerals' ability to make the venture successful. “The PNG mining industry has no objection to a new gold refinery being built, but it does not need to be done under any special new laws or under an environment of a regulated gold monopoly. If a gold refinery is to be created, it can be done by existing operators in PNG such as Kumul Minerals,” he said. “A new gold refinery with capacity to process 3 million ounces of gold can be built in either Lae or Port Moresby for an estimate of K60 million. This is well within the financial capacity of Kumul Minerals. Although the gold refinery business traditionally has very thin margins, it is our view that Kumul Minerals has the capacity and capability to make it work,” the PNG CORE leader said. Moreover, Smaré advocated for the establishment of a 100% PNG-owned gold refinery by Kumul Minerals, emphasizing that it can be achieved without the need for special new laws or a regulated gold monopoly. He highlighted that Kumul Minerals could undertake the project without compromising the independence of the Bank of PNG or impacting existing mining agreements and laws crucial to the country's governance. “Better yet, Kumul Minerals can build a 100% PNG-owned gold refinery without an NGC Bill, without a gold monopoly, without a gold police, without any attacks on the independence of the Bank of PNG, without overriding all the project agreements of existing mines, and without overriding 26 important PNG laws, and impacting the work of the other important government agencies and departments that serve the PNG people,” Smare said. Kumul Minerals has expressed readiness to take on the challenge of gold refining in PNG, urging stakeholders to reconsider the decision to favor foreign entities over local expertise and capacity. In light of PNG CORE’s briefing to the business community, a consultation workshop was organized by the Ministry of Mining on May 15th in Port Moresby, purposely for the stakeholder’s consultation workshop on the National Gold Corporation Bill 2024. PM Marape Addresses Stakeholders Consultation Prime Minister Hon. James Marape in his opening remarks during the stakeholders’ consultation, pledges support for the gold refinery establishment. He reaffirmed the government's unwavering commitment to establish a gold refinery, underlining the necessity of reducing reliance on foreign processing of natural resources, particularly gold, which often results in importation of finished products. He emphasized the transformative potential of local downstream processing, citing examples such as the Porgera project, as pivotal steps towards economic self-sufficiency. "Establishing a gold refinery locally will enable us to better manage our resources, bolster our economy, and foster sustainable growth domestically," stated Prime Minister Marape. He highlighted the significance of leveraging internal resources for economic prosperity, citing examples of successful developmental models adopted by other nations. Mr. . Marape clarified to the consultation participants, including industry professionals, representatives from various sectors of government and the private sector, and ordinary citizens that his government is committed to improving the country's future through effective legal and policy reforms. He assured that the National Gold Corporation Bill 2024 is designed to benefit PNG without negatively impacting existing mining businesses or their contracts. “This Bill in no way intends to disarm mining businesses of their contracts, or deter investors on them return upon investment. In fact, this Government wants to add value to the mining industry of the country. We will give you an option to refine your golds locally and if you so wish sell your gold at world market price locally,” the Prime Minister clarified. Mr. . Marape assured stakeholders that the bill aims to enhance the country's economic landscape without jeopardizing existing mining operations or investor agreements. He clarified that the bill aims to add value to the mining industry by providing options for local refinement and sale of gold at international market prices. Encouraging constructive engagement, the Prime Minister invited feedback from industry experts, government representatives, and citizens alike, emphasizing the government's receptiveness to diverse perspectives. He reiterated the importance of transparency and collaboration in shaping legislation for the nation's benefit. “We are open to views and advice from industry professionals or the general public on this Bill, and that is why we are having this consultation. We have made our stance and intention on the Bill clear for the benefit of Papua New Guinea. But if you have other views on this, you are free to tell us where we can improve things so that this Bill is properly presented in Parliament, where everyone knows what it will bring about into the future," he said Stakeholders Consultation Workshop The stakeholder’s consultation workshop included: Comment session by stakeholders and the public Presentation of Amendments to Mining Act 1992 by the Secretary of Mining Secretary, Mr. . Harry Kore Presentation of Amendments to Mine Safety Act 19977 by the Deputy Secretary Mining, Mr. . Winterford Eko The panel of experts were from relevant state agencies and industry participants. The Managing Director for the Mineral Resources Authority (MR. A), Mr.  Jerry Garry, commended all participants in the consultation and urged all stakeholders to submit written proposals to the working committee. The Minister of Mining Hon. Muguwa Dilu, MP, during the stakeholder consultation made a commitment to see that a business modality was created and presented to stakeholders and business. He stated that it is his responsibility to write to the Prime Minister to increase the consultation process on the National Gold Corporation Bill to 6 months.
May 13, 2024
Prime Minister Hon. James Marape recently praised the economic opportunities the Papua LNG Project and the Wildebeest LNG Project are set to bring, as both natural gas projects underline the potential for business growth and development in the region. PM Marape called on the residents of Gulf Province to prepare to supply goods and services to the forthcoming projects, emphasizing the substantial business implications and potential opportunities for investors. He said the focus will be on local agriculture and fisheries for food supplies, forestry for timber, and tourism to accommodate the surge of workers and visitors expected, as these presented lucrative prospects for entrepreneurial ventures and investment. During the inauguration of the Kerema District SME and Women’s Micro Bank branch on 7th May, Prime Minister Marape announced a funding of K3 million to initiate the SME project and an additional K10 million granted to the Kerema District Development Authority (DDA) to enhance the Kerema Airport, signaling government support for private sector engagement and investment. The Prime Minister underscored the critical role of local businesses in driving economic prosperity and job creation. Also present were Bank of PNG Governor Ms. Elizabeth Genia and her staff, Gulf Deputy Governor Hon. Morris Taudevin, Vice-Minister for Works and Highways Hon. Miki Kaeok, and other provincial and community leaders. Prime Minister Marape disclosed the Cabinet’s decision to appoint Augustine Mano, the Managing Director of the Mineral Resources Development Company, as the Chairman of the Gulf Provincial Health Authority (PHA). “Papua LNG will materialize in the next two to three years,” stated PM Marape, highlighting the timeline for investment realization and urging investors to position themselves strategically to capitalize on early-stage opportunities. He outlined the construction phases from 2026 through 2028, expressing eagerness for ExxonMobil to expand exploration at Wildebeest, which is located just north of Kerema and is potentially the largest LNG resource in the nation. The Prime Minister called upon Gulf Governor Hon. Chris Haiveta, Kerema MP Hon. Thomas Opa, and Kikori MP Hon. Soroi Eoe to begin provincial developments in anticipation of these transformative projects. “I envisage food from our Gulf being directly supplied to these projects,” he said. He also noted ongoing discussions with Governor Haiveta on developing ports in strategic locations like Kerema, Ihu, Paia, and Kikori to bolster logistics, presenting potential investment opportunities in port infrastructure and associated services. Prime Minister Marape also remarked on recent Cabinet approvals, including a contract over K150 million to pave the section from Laloki River to Brown River along the Hiritano Highway, an important   connection for the region. “The Hiritano Highway is more than a roadway; it is an economic lifeline linking Central, Gulf, and Morobe to the heart of the country and pivotal LNG projects,” he said. Prime Minister Marape reassured the people of Kerema and the broader Gulf community of their integral role in this national development, stating, “You are not forgotten,” and highlighting the government's commitment to inclusive growth and equitable distribution of opportunities across all regions. The Prime Minister emphasized their support for both mothers and men to venture into MSMEs, thereby contributing to the growth of the local economy and fostering entrepreneurship and business innovation.
May 13, 2024
Prime Minister Hon. James Marape recently praised the economic opportunities the Papua LNG Project and the Wildebeest LNG Project are set to bring, as both natural gas projects underline the potential for business growth and development in the region. PM Marape called on the residents of Gulf Province to prepare to supply goods and services to the forthcoming projects, emphasizing the substantial business implications and potential opportunities for investors. He said the focus will be on local agriculture and fisheries for food supplies, forestry for timber, and tourism to accommodate the surge of workers and visitors expected, as these presented lucrative prospects for entrepreneurial ventures and investment. During the inauguration of the Kerema District SME and Women’s Micro Bank branch on 7th May, Prime Minister Marape announced a funding of K3 million to initiate the SME project and an additional K10 million granted to the Kerema District Development Authority (DDA) to enhance the Kerema Airport, signaling government support for private sector engagement and investment. The Prime Minister underscored the critical role of local businesses in driving economic prosperity and job creation. Also present were Bank of PNG Governor Ms. Elizabeth Genia and her staff, Gulf Deputy Governor Hon. Morris Taudevin, Vice-Minister for Works and Highways Hon. Miki Kaeok, and other provincial and community leaders. Prime Minister Marape disclosed the Cabinet’s decision to appoint Augustine Mano, the Managing Director of the Mineral Resources Development Company, as the Chairman of the Gulf Provincial Health Authority (PHA). “Papua LNG will materialize in the next two to three years,” stated PM Marape, highlighting the timeline for investment realization and urging investors to position themselves strategically to capitalize on early-stage opportunities. He outlined the construction phases from 2026 through 2028, expressing eagerness for ExxonMobil to expand exploration at Wildebeest, which is located just north of Kerema and is potentially the largest LNG resource in the nation. The Prime Minister called upon Gulf Governor Hon. Chris Haiveta, Kerema MP Hon. Thomas Opa, and Kikori MP Hon. Soroi Eoe to begin provincial developments in anticipation of these transformative projects. “I envisage food from our Gulf being directly supplied to these projects,” he said. He also noted ongoing discussions with Governor Haiveta on developing ports in strategic locations like Kerema, Ihu, Paia, and Kikori to bolster logistics, presenting potential investment opportunities in port infrastructure and associated services. Prime Minister Marape also remarked on recent Cabinet approvals, including a contract over K150 million to pave the section from Laloki River to Brown River along the Hiritano Highway, an important   connection for the region. “The Hiritano Highway is more than a roadway; it is an economic lifeline linking Central, Gulf, and Morobe to the heart of the country and pivotal LNG projects,” he said. Prime Minister Marape reassured the people of Kerema and the broader Gulf community of their integral role in this national development, stating, “You are not forgotten,” and highlighting the government's commitment to inclusive growth and equitable distribution of opportunities across all regions. The Prime Minister emphasized their support for both mothers and men to venture into MSMEs, thereby contributing to the growth of the local economy and fostering entrepreneurship and business innovation.
April 15, 2024
In the ever-evolving development sectors of sustainable energy, mastering the installation of solar energy systems is both a skill and a necessity. With advancements and innovations occurring at a rapid pace, being informed with developments are crucial for companies in the electrical and solar industry. The Sustainable Energy Industry Association Papua New Guinea (SEAP) recently hosted a pivotal workshop in partnership with the Sustainable Energy Industry Association of Pacific Islands (SEIAPI) and the United States Agency for International Development PNG Electrification Project (USAID-PEP). Held on the 5th of April at the USAID-PEP office in Port Moresby, the event titled “SEIAPI/SEAP/USAID-PEP Solar Standards Workshop” brought together 60 participants from solar and electrical companies, government agencies, international donor organizations, and academia. The USAID-PEP Chief of Party Bruce Corbet highlighted the importance of mini-grids and small-scale electrification in achieving PNG’s electrification goals. Mr Corbet said, “This is one of the steps we are taking as more people join. And it is really important, this message, ‘that mini-grids and small-scale electrification is a fundamental part of electrifying Papua New Guinea’ and achieving the government’s goal of that 70% access target by 2030.” He emphasized the necessity of partnerships and capacity development for such initiative. USAID-PEP seeks to enable the creation of PNG’s mini-grid development industry. The workshop is for capacity development, including an opportunity to network with potential partners in the industry. The workshop lasted 1 hour and 30 minutes and participants were immersed with information and knowledge, guided by a “Standards Presentation,” followed by a question-and-answer session and a few minutes of industrial networking. The workshop, held both in person and online by Zoom, served as a platform of knowledge and collaboration, shedding light on solar energy installation. SEIAPI Executive Officer, Geoff Stapleton, a distinguished pioneer of the Australian solar industry, led the workshop with commendable expertise and insight. In collaboration with SEAP and USAID-PEP teams, Stapleton’s presentation delved deep into the topics such as design and product standards, solar energy standards, safety practices, and installation techniques. The presentation focused on critical standards and guidelines regarding solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, with a specific focus on design, installation, and product standards. Stapleton also provided a comprehensive overview of essential standards. From AS 4509.1:2009 to AS/NZS 4777.1:2016, each standard was explained with a visual guide, emphasizing its significance and implications for solar designers and installers. Stapleton’s pivotal role in the development and refinement of solar industry standards was evident, showcasing his expertise and commitment to ensuring installation practices and safety measures are carried out during installation based on both specification and requirements. The workshop's agenda covered a broad spectrum of topics, ranging from stand-alone power systems to grid connection requirements. Attendees also participated in the presentation by discussion, which they gained insights into system designed complexity, safety requirements for PV (photovoltaic) arrays or solar arrays, and electrical installations involving battery systems. Moreover, the presentation highlighted the inter-relation between various standards, emphasizing their collective role in ensuring the safety and effectiveness of solar energy systems. One of the workshop's key takeaways was the importance of compliance with industry standards. With safety being a paramount concern, adherence to standards such as AS/NZS 5033:2021 and AS/NZS 5139:2019 is imperative for companies operating in the electrical and solar industry. In addition, the workshop underscored the critical role of training and recognition schemes in fostering a culture of excellence and professionalism within the industry, especially in an industry where precision and compliance are paramount.
April 15, 2024
In the ever-evolving development sectors of sustainable energy, mastering the installation of solar energy systems is both a skill and a necessity. With advancements and innovations occurring at a rapid pace, being informed with developments are crucial for companies in the electrical and solar industry. The Sustainable Energy Industry Association Papua New Guinea (SEAP) recently hosted a pivotal workshop in partnership with the Sustainable Energy Industry Association of Pacific Islands (SEIAPI) and the United States Agency for International Development PNG Electrification Project (USAID-PEP). Held on the 5th of April at the USAID-PEP office in Port Moresby, the event titled “SEIAPI/SEAP/USAID-PEP Solar Standards Workshop” brought together 60 participants from solar and electrical companies, government agencies, international donor organizations, and academia. The USAID-PEP Chief of Party Bruce Corbet highlighted the importance of mini-grids and small-scale electrification in achieving PNG’s electrification goals. Mr Corbet said, “This is one of the steps we are taking as more people join. And it is really important, this message, ‘that mini-grids and small-scale electrification is a fundamental part of electrifying Papua New Guinea’ and achieving the government’s goal of that 70% access target by 2030.” He emphasized the necessity of partnerships and capacity development for such initiative. USAID-PEP seeks to enable the creation of PNG’s mini-grid development industry. The workshop is for capacity development, including an opportunity to network with potential partners in the industry. The workshop lasted 1 hour and 30 minutes and participants were immersed with information and knowledge, guided by a “Standards Presentation,” followed by a question-and-answer session and a few minutes of industrial networking. The workshop, held both in person and online by Zoom, served as a platform of knowledge and collaboration, shedding light on solar energy installation. SEIAPI Executive Officer, Geoff Stapleton, a distinguished pioneer of the Australian solar industry, led the workshop with commendable expertise and insight. In collaboration with SEAP and USAID-PEP teams, Stapleton’s presentation delved deep into the topics such as design and product standards, solar energy standards, safety practices, and installation techniques. The presentation focused on critical standards and guidelines regarding solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, with a specific focus on design, installation, and product standards. Stapleton also provided a comprehensive overview of essential standards. From AS 4509.1:2009 to AS/NZS 4777.1:2016, each standard was explained with a visual guide, emphasizing its significance and implications for solar designers and installers. Stapleton’s pivotal role in the development and refinement of solar industry standards was evident, showcasing his expertise and commitment to ensuring installation practices and safety measures are carried out during installation based on both specification and requirements. The workshop's agenda covered a broad spectrum of topics, ranging from stand-alone power systems to grid connection requirements. Attendees also participated in the presentation by discussion, which they gained insights into system designed complexity, safety requirements for PV (photovoltaic) arrays or solar arrays, and electrical installations involving battery systems. Moreover, the presentation highlighted the inter-relation between various standards, emphasizing their collective role in ensuring the safety and effectiveness of solar energy systems. One of the workshop's key takeaways was the importance of compliance with industry standards. With safety being a paramount concern, adherence to standards such as AS/NZS 5033:2021 and AS/NZS 5139:2019 is imperative for companies operating in the electrical and solar industry. In addition, the workshop underscored the critical role of training and recognition schemes in fostering a culture of excellence and professionalism within the industry, especially in an industry where precision and compliance are paramount.
April 29, 2024
AgResearch is keen and ready to partner the National Agriculture Research Institute (NARI) of Papua New Guinea (PNG) to help develop the agriculture sector of PNG. AgResearch is one the seven Crown Research Institutes in New Zealand responsible for delivering innovative science and research outcomes specifically for the agricultural sector. In their meeting with the Minister for International Trade and Investment, Hon. Richard Maru in Hamilton, New Zealand, AgResearch said they were happy to partner NARI to provide research training and internships for Papua New Guinea agriculture scientists and graduates. Minister Maru said: “AgResearch has been providing training internships routinely through similar arrangements with their partners and they are keen to do the same with PNG through a partnership with NARI. They are happy to work with the PNG Government and NARI to formalize this partnership.” Minister Maru further stated: “We want to build our dairy industry to become a dairy producing nation, but we have no expertise. New Zealand has all the expertise and experience and are renowned globally in this space and that is why we want our agriculture scientists and graduates to come to AgResearch to be trained so they can learn from them and return to PNG to build our own industry.” “This will be the start of our journey to building a serious agriculture relationship with New Zealand,” Minister Maru added.
May 20, 2024
The Bank of Papua New Guinea (BPNG) welcomed a distinguished ministerial delegation from New Zealand to discuss the progress and initiatives of the Green Finance Centre (GFC) in the context of climate resilience in Papua New Guinea. The meeting, held on May 13, 2024, underscored the pivotal role of green finance in addressing climate change challenges facing the island nation. The round table discussion facilitated an exchange of insights among officials from the New Zealand Ministerial Delegation, BPNG, the Climate Change Development Authority (CCDA), and the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI). Led by the New Zealand Minister of Climate Change, Hon. Simon Watt, MP, the NZ delegation commended the BPNG for its leadership in establishing foundational structures for green finance in PNG noting that the Central Bank can be can be proud of this. Hon. Watts emphasized that climate change is fundamentally an economic issue. He added that New Zealand, which is also advancing its Green Taxonomy, is eager to assist the Green Finance Centre in harmonizing its Inclusive Green Taxonomy. "The New Zealand Government is impressed with the Bank of Papua New Guinea’s approach to creating a resilient and stable financial system," Hon. Watts stated. He expressed New Zealand's interest in collaborating with like-minded countries in the green finance sector, noting that both countries experience the impact of climate events with similar intensity, thereby presenting mutual opportunities for assistance in adaptation and mitigation efforts. PNG, being an island nation, faces heightened vulnerability to climate crisis such as floods, droughts, rising sea levels, and strong winds. The collaboration between the New Zealand government and BPNG aims to address these challenges by integrating green finance policies into the country's financial ecosystem. Mrs. Elizabeth Genia, Governor of the BPNG, conveyed through Deputy Governor Mr. Jeffrey Yabom, a message to the Ministerial delegation emphasizing BPNG's mission to serve the people of PNG. This mission involves implementing effective monetary policy and maintaining a sound and inclusive financial system, she noted, highlighting the systemic implications of climate-related events and policy changes on financial markets and underscoring the need for proactive measures to address climate-related risks. In response to climate change-related issues, the BPNG is dedicated to playing a pivotal role in safeguarding market stability by proactively addressing climate-related risks and strengthening resilience. Bank of PNG, Assistant Governor, Mr George Awab, who is also the Chair of the Steering Committee for the Green Finance Centre, stressed a focus on normalizing required finance not only at the international level but also domestically.  Getting the support from the New Zealand government is to develop the Green Climate Center, which is the key Agency, he said. The establishment of the Green Finance Centre, supported by the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) and the Centre for Excellence in Financial Inclusion (CEFI), marks a significant milestone in promoting green growth and economic diversification in Papua New Guinea.   Funded by the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) under the Low Emission Climate Resilient Development (LECRD) program, the GFC aims to integrate inclusive green finance policies into lending operations, fostering financial inclusion and sustainable investment activities. In partnership with the Centre for Excellence in Financial Inclusion (CEFI), GGGI developed the Inclusive Green Finance Policy (IGFP) in 2023. This initiative, funded by the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) with a grant of USD 670,000 under the Low Emission Climate Resilient Development (LECRD) program, led to the establishment of the GFC. The GFC is mandated to implement the IGFP and Roadmap and oversee other green finance initiatives in the country aimed at mitigating climate-related risks, promoting green finance, and catalyzing investments towards a more sustainable future. The primary goal of the project is to develop and integrate the Inclusive Green Finance Policy (IGFP) into the lending operations of financial institutions. This integration aims to create a financial ecosystem conducive to financial inclusion, green growth in investment activities, and economic diversification, which in turn will lead to an increase in green jobs. Hon. Watts reiterated New Zealand's commitment to advancing green finance initiatives and expressed eagerness to collaborate with Papua New Guinea on harmonizing green taxonomies. He emphasized the economic dimensions of climate change, stating, "The way we address today's pressing climate issues will shape our future." The significant roundtable meeting was attended by, New Zealand Delegation; Hon. Simon, Watts, Minister of Climate Change, Hon. Dr Shane Reti, Minister of Health, and Minister for Pacific People. New Zealand MPs Hon. Tim van de Molen, MP and Chair of the Foreign Affairs, Defense and Trade Committee, and Hon. David Parker, an MP for the Labour Party (not current in Government) and opposition spokesperson for Foreign Affairs, were present. Gerardine Clifford, Chief Executive, Ministry for Pacific Peoples, Charlie Gillard, Deputy High Commissioner, New Zealand High Commission and Laura Holder, First Secretary, New Zealand High Commission were also with the delegation. Accompanying the NZ delegates were Jessica Rowe, Private Secretary, Minister of Climate Change; Nelson Tiatia, Private Secretary to Minister Reti; Charlotte Gendall, Press Secretary to Minister Reti; Ramphaey Gime, Development Programme Coordinator; and Cynthia Duoribi, Policy Adviser. PNG delegation attendees included Mr Jeffrey Yabom, Deputy Governor BPNG; Mr George Awap, Asst. Governor BPNG and Chair Steering Committee GFC; Ms. Debra Sungi, Acting Managing Director, Climate Change and Development Authority; Mr. Mohinesh Prasad, Head of Green Finance Centre; Mr. Saliya Ranasinghe, Executive Director CEFI; Mr. Peter Samuel, Deputy Executive Director, CEFI; Mr. Peniamina  Leavai, Deputy Country Rep, GGGI PNG; and Mr. Angus Moina, SCA GFC. During the roundtable discussion, BPNG Assistant Governor Mr. Awap, who also serves as Chairperson of the Steering Committee for the Green Finance Centre, thanked the New Zealand Government for its regional leadership on climate change. Mr. Awap highlighted the critical role of the Green Finance Centre in fostering a sustainable financial ecosystem in PNG. Mr. Prasad, Head of the Green Finance Centre, updated the delegation on the significant progress the GFC has made and its forthcoming initiatives aimed at greening PNG’s financial system. Through leadership, guidance, and support, the Centre will mitigate climate-related risks, promote green finance, and catalyze investments toward a more sustainable future for PNG, he said. Key outcomes from the discussion include New Zealand's continued support for the Green Finance Centre's mandate and intentions to collaborate with Papua New Guinea on carbon markets. The collaborative efforts between the two nations reflect a shared commitment to building resilient and sustainable financial systems in the face of climate change challenges.
May 20, 2024
The Bank of Papua New Guinea (BPNG) welcomed a distinguished ministerial delegation from New Zealand to discuss the progress and initiatives of the Green Finance Centre (GFC) in the context of climate resilience in Papua New Guinea. The meeting, held on May 13, 2024, underscored the pivotal role of green finance in addressing climate change challenges facing the island nation. The round table discussion facilitated an exchange of insights among officials from the New Zealand Ministerial Delegation, BPNG, the Climate Change Development Authority (CCDA), and the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI). Led by the New Zealand Minister of Climate Change, Hon. Simon Watt, MP, the NZ delegation commended the BPNG for its leadership in establishing foundational structures for green finance in PNG noting that the Central Bank can be can be proud of this. Hon. Watts emphasized that climate change is fundamentally an economic issue. He added that New Zealand, which is also advancing its Green Taxonomy, is eager to assist the Green Finance Centre in harmonizing its Inclusive Green Taxonomy. "The New Zealand Government is impressed with the Bank of Papua New Guinea’s approach to creating a resilient and stable financial system," Hon. Watts stated. He expressed New Zealand's interest in collaborating with like-minded countries in the green finance sector, noting that both countries experience the impact of climate events with similar intensity, thereby presenting mutual opportunities for assistance in adaptation and mitigation efforts. PNG, being an island nation, faces heightened vulnerability to climate crisis such as floods, droughts, rising sea levels, and strong winds. The collaboration between the New Zealand government and BPNG aims to address these challenges by integrating green finance policies into the country's financial ecosystem. Mrs. Elizabeth Genia, Governor of the BPNG, conveyed through Deputy Governor Mr. Jeffrey Yabom, a message to the Ministerial delegation emphasizing BPNG's mission to serve the people of PNG. This mission involves implementing effective monetary policy and maintaining a sound and inclusive financial system, she noted, highlighting the systemic implications of climate-related events and policy changes on financial markets and underscoring the need for proactive measures to address climate-related risks. In response to climate change-related issues, the BPNG is dedicated to playing a pivotal role in safeguarding market stability by proactively addressing climate-related risks and strengthening resilience. Bank of PNG, Assistant Governor, Mr George Awab, who is also the Chair of the Steering Committee for the Green Finance Centre, stressed a focus on normalizing required finance not only at the international level but also domestically.  Getting the support from the New Zealand government is to develop the Green Climate Center, which is the key Agency, he said. The establishment of the Green Finance Centre, supported by the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) and the Centre for Excellence in Financial Inclusion (CEFI), marks a significant milestone in promoting green growth and economic diversification in Papua New Guinea.   Funded by the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) under the Low Emission Climate Resilient Development (LECRD) program, the GFC aims to integrate inclusive green finance policies into lending operations, fostering financial inclusion and sustainable investment activities. In partnership with the Centre for Excellence in Financial Inclusion (CEFI), GGGI developed the Inclusive Green Finance Policy (IGFP) in 2023. This initiative, funded by the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) with a grant of USD 670,000 under the Low Emission Climate Resilient Development (LECRD) program, led to the establishment of the GFC. The GFC is mandated to implement the IGFP and Roadmap and oversee other green finance initiatives in the country aimed at mitigating climate-related risks, promoting green finance, and catalyzing investments towards a more sustainable future. The primary goal of the project is to develop and integrate the Inclusive Green Finance Policy (IGFP) into the lending operations of financial institutions. This integration aims to create a financial ecosystem conducive to financial inclusion, green growth in investment activities, and economic diversification, which in turn will lead to an increase in green jobs. Hon. Watts reiterated New Zealand's commitment to advancing green finance initiatives and expressed eagerness to collaborate with Papua New Guinea on harmonizing green taxonomies. He emphasized the economic dimensions of climate change, stating, "The way we address today's pressing climate issues will shape our future." The significant roundtable meeting was attended by, New Zealand Delegation; Hon. Simon, Watts, Minister of Climate Change, Hon. Dr Shane Reti, Minister of Health, and Minister for Pacific People. New Zealand MPs Hon. Tim van de Molen, MP and Chair of the Foreign Affairs, Defense and Trade Committee, and Hon. David Parker, an MP for the Labour Party (not current in Government) and opposition spokesperson for Foreign Affairs, were present. Gerardine Clifford, Chief Executive, Ministry for Pacific Peoples, Charlie Gillard, Deputy High Commissioner, New Zealand High Commission and Laura Holder, First Secretary, New Zealand High Commission were also with the delegation. Accompanying the NZ delegates were Jessica Rowe, Private Secretary, Minister of Climate Change; Nelson Tiatia, Private Secretary to Minister Reti; Charlotte Gendall, Press Secretary to Minister Reti; Ramphaey Gime, Development Programme Coordinator; and Cynthia Duoribi, Policy Adviser. PNG delegation attendees included Mr Jeffrey Yabom, Deputy Governor BPNG; Mr George Awap, Asst. Governor BPNG and Chair Steering Committee GFC; Ms. Debra Sungi, Acting Managing Director, Climate Change and Development Authority; Mr. Mohinesh Prasad, Head of Green Finance Centre; Mr. Saliya Ranasinghe, Executive Director CEFI; Mr. Peter Samuel, Deputy Executive Director, CEFI; Mr. Peniamina  Leavai, Deputy Country Rep, GGGI PNG; and Mr. Angus Moina, SCA GFC. During the roundtable discussion, BPNG Assistant Governor Mr. Awap, who also serves as Chairperson of the Steering Committee for the Green Finance Centre, thanked the New Zealand Government for its regional leadership on climate change. Mr. Awap highlighted the critical role of the Green Finance Centre in fostering a sustainable financial ecosystem in PNG. Mr. Prasad, Head of the Green Finance Centre, updated the delegation on the significant progress the GFC has made and its forthcoming initiatives aimed at greening PNG’s financial system. Through leadership, guidance, and support, the Centre will mitigate climate-related risks, promote green finance, and catalyze investments toward a more sustainable future for PNG, he said. Key outcomes from the discussion include New Zealand's continued support for the Green Finance Centre's mandate and intentions to collaborate with Papua New Guinea on carbon markets. The collaborative efforts between the two nations reflect a shared commitment to building resilient and sustainable financial systems in the face of climate change challenges.
April 29, 2024
Papua New Guinea Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Hon. Isi Henry Leonard recently welcomed distinguished guests from China, PNG, and stakeholders for the first China Ready Workshop held on the 25th April at APEC House-Port Moresby. “Your presence here signifies our vision for a vibrant future in tourism and business between Port Moresby-PNG and China,” Minister Leonard said in his opening remarks. China Ready is a global accreditation system that certifies a product or service that can be trusted by a Chinese consumer. This internationally recognized system is being rolled out in PNG’s capital among affiliated members of the tourism industry. PNG is the 51st country across six continents to adopt this program, representing 25 percent of global destinations. The workshop is organized by the PNG Tourism Promotion Authority (PNGTPA) and the National Capital District (NCD) Governor’s Office in close partnership with the Government of China. It is an exclusive event, initiated to prepare Port Moresby’s tourism industry and its stakeholders for the opportunities the Chinese market offers. The workshop included the latest market updates, insights into the post-COVID-19 Chinese traveler, effective strategies to take on the fast-evolving Chinese market, and tap into its vast potential. Areas ranging from transportation and accommodation to entertainment and services highlight the diverse opportunities awaiting the city, as the government and stakeholders prepare to welcome Chinese tourists. Participants gained valuable knowledge on post-COVID Chinese tourist demographers, behavioral changes, the rising trend of Free Independent Travellers, effective communication strategies with Chinese partners, destination selection criteria, target strategies for Chinese travellers, and marketing PNG’s unique culture and natural beauty. Participants in the workshop included: Government officials from tourism departments and ministries Cultural organizations and heritage sites representatives Local tourist boards and associations Hotels and accommodation representatives Tour operators and travel agencies Transportation providers (airlines, railways, bus companies) Restaurant and food services businesses Attractions and touristic sites management Retailers and souvenir shops Tourist guides Emergency services and healthcare providers Agencies for safety and security briefing Marketing and public relations professionals for destination promotion Hospitality training institutes and professionals for service improvement. In his speech, Hon. Leonard said: “We will work closely with our stakeholders to enhance Port Moresby’s image, correct misconceptions, and strengthen our ties with Guangdong Province.” “It is time that PNG joins other Pacific nations that have benefited through this China Ready approach. it is evident in their success stories of countries like Samoa, which has experienced significant increase in Chinese visitation numbers and tourism growth after adopting the China Ready principles. Let us seize this opportunity to build strong partnerships, enhance our city’s appeal, and pave the way for sustainable growth and mutual prosperity.” More than 60 participants got certified, including air service providers, car rental companies, clothing retail outlets, and received their certificates after completing the China Ready workshop. NCD Governor Hon. Powes Parkop reiterated the significance of making Port Moresby and PNG China Ready “to tap into and harness this potential of tourism.” “The National Government through the Minister adopted the strategic plan and now it’s up to all of us to roll the strategy out. We must recognize and understand that, Tourism is a sleeping giant,” he said. Hon. Powes emphasized the products of tourism that PNG can offer. Port Moresby, as the nation’s capital, is a hub of more than a thousand tribes and cultures, a diverse country that is rich with language. PNG owns one-third of the world’s rainforest, which is a tourist product in itself, he added. The China Ready Workshop follows the recent establishment of direct flights from Guangzhou, China to Port Moresby by China Southern Airlines, fueling the expected increase in tourism in the coming months.  PNGTPA’s CEO Mr. Eric Mossman Uvovo described the initiative as a historical milestone for the country, “where we position ourselves to welcome one of the biggest economies in the world in terms of tourism. The workshop was a pivotal moment for stakeholders and all of us to be ready for the outbound Chinese Market.” The China Ready Program was established in 2002 and is the largest of its kind, ensuring destinations and service providers meet Chinese hospitality standards. It is operated by CBISN and exclusively issued by the China Outbound Tourism Research Academy (COTA). The program is endorsed by the Chinese Ministry of Culture and Tourism. Dr. Marcus Lee, CEO of China Travel Online and facilitator for the China Ready workshop, provided insights into the program's objectives. "Our primary objective is to enable Papua New Guinea to tap into the vast potential of the Chinese market. We've completed our audit, and the essence of the China Ready concept is to guide destinations and stakeholders on welcoming Chinese tourists. More importantly, it's about delivering services and products that meet Chinese standards," said Lee. Lee encouraged the government to work closely with PNGTPA to make PNG China Ready. “I urge all stakeholders, including the government and PNGTPA, to implement the Insights gained to make Port Moresby and PNG truly China Ready,” he said. Lee is CEO of China Travel Online, a leading China Outbound Travel portal on the China-wide web with over 100 destinations listed. The group consists of Technology, Media, and MICE, with officers across 10 countries in Asia and China. The portal reach 80% of the Chinese outbound travel trade. He sits on board as Chairman of China SME Business Owners Association (ICIF) with 11,000 corporate members. Marcus speak 6 Chinese languages and is the author of the international bestseller “How to Outsmart China” featured by CNN, China Daily and Bloomberg.
April 29, 2024
Papua New Guinea Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Hon. Isi Henry Leonard recently welcomed distinguished guests from China, PNG, and stakeholders for the first China Ready Workshop held on the 25th April at APEC House-Port Moresby. “Your presence here signifies our vision for a vibrant future in tourism and business between Port Moresby-PNG and China,” Minister Leonard said in his opening remarks. China Ready is a global accreditation system that certifies a product or service that can be trusted by a Chinese consumer. This internationally recognized system is being rolled out in PNG’s capital among affiliated members of the tourism industry. PNG is the 51st country across six continents to adopt this program, representing 25 percent of global destinations. The workshop is organized by the PNG Tourism Promotion Authority (PNGTPA) and the National Capital District (NCD) Governor’s Office in close partnership with the Government of China. It is an exclusive event, initiated to prepare Port Moresby’s tourism industry and its stakeholders for the opportunities the Chinese market offers. The workshop included the latest market updates, insights into the post-COVID-19 Chinese traveler, effective strategies to take on the fast-evolving Chinese market, and tap into its vast potential. Areas ranging from transportation and accommodation to entertainment and services highlight the diverse opportunities awaiting the city, as the government and stakeholders prepare to welcome Chinese tourists. Participants gained valuable knowledge on post-COVID Chinese tourist demographers, behavioral changes, the rising trend of Free Independent Travellers, effective communication strategies with Chinese partners, destination selection criteria, target strategies for Chinese travellers, and marketing PNG’s unique culture and natural beauty. Participants in the workshop included: Government officials from tourism departments and ministries Cultural organizations and heritage sites representatives Local tourist boards and associations Hotels and accommodation representatives Tour operators and travel agencies Transportation providers (airlines, railways, bus companies) Restaurant and food services businesses Attractions and touristic sites management Retailers and souvenir shops Tourist guides Emergency services and healthcare providers Agencies for safety and security briefing Marketing and public relations professionals for destination promotion Hospitality training institutes and professionals for service improvement. In his speech, Hon. Leonard said: “We will work closely with our stakeholders to enhance Port Moresby’s image, correct misconceptions, and strengthen our ties with Guangdong Province.” “It is time that PNG joins other Pacific nations that have benefited through this China Ready approach. it is evident in their success stories of countries like Samoa, which has experienced significant increase in Chinese visitation numbers and tourism growth after adopting the China Ready principles. Let us seize this opportunity to build strong partnerships, enhance our city’s appeal, and pave the way for sustainable growth and mutual prosperity.” More than 60 participants got certified, including air service providers, car rental companies, clothing retail outlets, and received their certificates after completing the China Ready workshop. NCD Governor Hon. Powes Parkop reiterated the significance of making Port Moresby and PNG China Ready “to tap into and harness this potential of tourism.” “The National Government through the Minister adopted the strategic plan and now it’s up to all of us to roll the strategy out. We must recognize and understand that, Tourism is a sleeping giant,” he said. Hon. Powes emphasized the products of tourism that PNG can offer. Port Moresby, as the nation’s capital, is a hub of more than a thousand tribes and cultures, a diverse country that is rich with language. PNG owns one-third of the world’s rainforest, which is a tourist product in itself, he added. The China Ready Workshop follows the recent establishment of direct flights from Guangzhou, China to Port Moresby by China Southern Airlines, fueling the expected increase in tourism in the coming months.  PNGTPA’s CEO Mr. Eric Mossman Uvovo described the initiative as a historical milestone for the country, “where we position ourselves to welcome one of the biggest economies in the world in terms of tourism. The workshop was a pivotal moment for stakeholders and all of us to be ready for the outbound Chinese Market.” The China Ready Program was established in 2002 and is the largest of its kind, ensuring destinations and service providers meet Chinese hospitality standards. It is operated by CBISN and exclusively issued by the China Outbound Tourism Research Academy (COTA). The program is endorsed by the Chinese Ministry of Culture and Tourism. Dr. Marcus Lee, CEO of China Travel Online and facilitator for the China Ready workshop, provided insights into the program's objectives. "Our primary objective is to enable Papua New Guinea to tap into the vast potential of the Chinese market. We've completed our audit, and the essence of the China Ready concept is to guide destinations and stakeholders on welcoming Chinese tourists. More importantly, it's about delivering services and products that meet Chinese standards," said Lee. Lee encouraged the government to work closely with PNGTPA to make PNG China Ready. “I urge all stakeholders, including the government and PNGTPA, to implement the Insights gained to make Port Moresby and PNG truly China Ready,” he said. Lee is CEO of China Travel Online, a leading China Outbound Travel portal on the China-wide web with over 100 destinations listed. The group consists of Technology, Media, and MICE, with officers across 10 countries in Asia and China. The portal reach 80% of the Chinese outbound travel trade. He sits on board as Chairman of China SME Business Owners Association (ICIF) with 11,000 corporate members. Marcus speak 6 Chinese languages and is the author of the international bestseller “How to Outsmart China” featured by CNN, China Daily and Bloomberg.
April 18, 2024
In Part I, we read about the signs of oil and gas throughout Papua New Guinea that enticed many oilmen to look for large oil and gas fields over many decades, and we read about the first commercial oil discovery at the Iagifu 2-X well and how the Kutubu field was successfully developed.  We now pick up the story where subsequent exploration wells found mainly gas fields rather than oil fields.    When Papua New Guinea realised that its petroleum endowment was not so full of oil, but was comprised substantially of natural gas resources, it was recognised that gas would be difficult to develop in the absence of any domestic gas demand from households, commerce, or industry, and all the more so being remote from the gas markets of other nations. So, in 1992, the Government through the newly-established Petroleum Branch, commissioned a study on all the discovered oil and gas fields of Papua New Guinea.  This work was conducted by the US firm, Scientific Software Intercom in collaboration with the officers of the Petroleum Branch and sought to assess the extent of the petroleum resources and reserves to proper and systematic standards of reserve reporting then published by the Society of Petroleum Engineers. Based on summations of the reserves, an economic study was undertaken applying the then prevailing Papua New Guinea petroleum fiscal regime. The results were presented to the National Executive Council (the Cabinet) showing that if the production from the gas fields discovered to date were aggregated, there could conceivably be a commercially viable gas development based on the export of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) to East Asian markets, but more work would be needed to obtain better quantification of the gas field development costs and the construction costs of a LNG plant and export facilities. The Government liked the idea of gas development and embarked on examining its policies for such and began fostering the notion of gas development. Economic and policy studies were conducted and extensive discussions between gas field owners and promoters ensued. In 1995, the Government tabled a White Paper on Natural Gas Policy before the Papua New Guinea Parliament. The policy laid down the regulatory and fiscal terms that the Government was willing to consider for the encouragement of investment in gas development.  Key features were the introduction of Petroleum Retention Licences (PRLs) to allow the companies to keep their discoveries beyond the period of tenure provided by a normal Petroleum Prospecting Licence.  This would be allowed in consideration of an acceptable programme of gas field appraisal and delineation, conduct of commercial studies and development promotion by the licensees. So long as a field was currently not commercially viable, the PRLs would allow retention for up to 15 years.  The gas policy also introduced a single ring-fence for the field development, gas pipeline infrastructure, LNG Plant and marine facilities. And based on considerable economic modelling, the Government landed on a concept of 50/50 sharing of the net value between the developer and the Government. The income tax rate for gas operations was set to 30% of net profits and the State decided it would keep its right to take up to 22.5% equity in the entirety of any development, including the LNG plant and associated facilities. Royalty rates were left at 2% of the wellhead value.  With the foundations for the gas development defined by the revised gas regulatory and fiscal regime, Exxon and BP pursued their LNG development plans based on the large Hides gas field with notions of taking the gas to the Papua New Guinea north-coast and a deep water plant site at Madang.  However, these plans faltered due to the Asian financial crisis in 1997 and the consequent sudden reduction in East Asian LNG demand and the terrible tsunami that occurred in 1998 at Aitape on the north coast.   An account of the tsunami was made by Prof. Hugh Davies of the University of Papua New Guinea in his book Aitape Story published in 2007. He attributed the devastating waves to movement on a sea floor fissure arising from a 7.0 magnitude earthquake. That movement caused a slump of seabed bottom sediment which would have generated the wave.   The tsunami demonstrated that whilst placing any LNG facilities nearer to markets, any north coast-located LNG facility would have to be built to much more exacting standards to cater for the additional seismic risk, as compared to the south coast. The Petroleum Division, mindful of the seismic hazards of the New Guinea part of Papua New Guinea, had earlier commissioned a Papua New Guinea Seismic Hazard Study, prepared by Dr Horst Letz, a renowned seismologist, which was completed around the time of the tsunami. It clearly defined the risk and indicated that a southern coast location for a LNG plant and facilities would be preferable. The story of the tragic Aitape tsunami and its aftermath are told by Prof Hugh Davies in his 2007 book: the Aitape Story.    When the amendments to the Petroleum Act were being prepared for gas development pursuant to the 1995 Gas Policy, the results of policy studies on landowner benefits (both royalty and equity sharing), strategic access to pipelines and processing facilities and elementary domestic gas business provisions became available, and an effort was made to incorporate these matters into the amendments. The Government was intent in providing statutorily defined benefits to communities hosting any future oil and gas development together with a proper process of consultation and liaison with communities. For such benefits, the Government devised the idea of a separate Development Agreement between the community parties and the State, which would be agreed in a formally convened Development Forum after proper research had been made as to land matters through the conduct of social mapping and landowner identification studies carried out by the licensees. Significant and specific political lobbying arose from the Southern Highlands Province (home to the major oil and gas fields) for the Government to consider making a separate Gas Act for gas operations. In the resulting compromise, the Government agreed at the political level to introduce some of the reforms suggested by the Province, but only if the Act would remain intact, though it was now agreed that the new Act would be rebranded as the Oil and Gas Act, whilst still referring to petroleum for the most part. Thus, the Oil and Gas Act, No 49 of 1998 was born. It represented a major restatement of the former Petroleum Act, covered much new ground and paved the way for improved participation by communities and their sharing in benefits. The cover of the Oil and Gas Act, 1998 consolidated to 2007, though there have been many more amendments since. This copy is battered and torn due to extensive use by the writer!  Later, BP withdrew from Papua New Guinea and took their ideas about Papua New Guinea LNG development to West Papua in Indonesia where they successfully launched the Tangguh LNG Project.  Then, Chevron, realising that they were handling increasing volumes of associated gas in their operation of the Kutubu oil fields, re-injecting as much as 400 million standard cubic feet of gas per day bought out the commercial notions that the International Petroleum Corporation (the early Lundin company) had about developing their offshore Pandora gas field in the Gulf of Papua, and sending that gas to Townsville in Queensland, Australia to supply a 200-megawatt power plant. A period followed when all development notions were focused on transmitting gas to Australia from the producing oil fields, plus the undeveloped gas fields. With Kutubu oil production declining, Chevron departed the venture, selling its Papua New Guinea interests to Oil Search and over the course of several years, the schemes waxed and waned. The Papua New Guinea Gas Project, alias Papua New Guinea Gas to Queensland Project or Gas to Australia Project ended up with over 4,300 kilometres of trunk gas pipelines and lateral pipelines hanging off the Papua New Guinea gas sources. Most of that infrastructure was in the north-eastern quadrant of Australia and was to be expensed against the supply of gas to a wide and quixotic range of Australian gas customers.  With low gas prices, high steel prices and the emergence of coal seam methane development notions in Australia, finally it was realised that Papua New Guinea might end up giving its gas away for nothing and that the only value For Papua New Guinea might remain in the natural gas condensates extracted in Papua New Guinea. The Papua New Guinea Gas Project for the supply of gas to Australia thus failed. An abrupt turn was made to change all the development ideas toward supplying a LNG plant to be located on the Papuan South coast and an effort made to market the gas as LNG to East Asian markets. The dependence on external infrastructure and specific gas demands in Australia was also not seen as either politically attractive or sustainable. Thus, was born the Papua New Guinea LNG Project, more familiarly known as the PNG LNG Project. PNG LNG has many factors in its favour as a distinct source for LNG for supply to East Asian markets. Papua New Guinea is a non-aligned Christian nation; it is not an Islamic nation. Papua New Guinea is desirous of investment and keen for development based on commercial oriented fiscal terms. Papua New Guinea as a nation has open-ocean access from its shores to customers and does not rely on any strategic straits. It has a Westminster-style Government and observes the principles of law and contract. Papua New Guinea is favourably positioned to supply the Australasian region, but can reach out to serve Asian, Pacific and American markets.  With diminishing oil production and the absence of new oil finds, Papua New Guinea’s explorers needed to capitalise on prior exploration investments that failed to find oil. Gas in the new century was no longer a hindrance and could be profitably developed even extending the life of the oil fields. The PNG LNG project was projected to export LNG at a heating value of 1,135 BTU/SCF gas and the liquids were forecast to sell at US$ 60/barrel. Anticipated LNG prices were:  US$ 8.07 per MSCF: equivalent to US$ 10.20 per MMBTU, or US$ 9.69/GJ. The original plant design was upgraded early on from.6.3 million tonnes per annum to 6.9 million tonnes per annum for production over a 30-year period.  Gross income was estimated to be ~ US$ 74.3 billion. Even at US$ 50/barrel oil, the project was still forecast to yield US$ 61.9 billion in LNG sales. The gas is rich in natural gas liquids, so at just 20 BO/MMSCF, some 210 million barrels of natural gas liquids were forecast to yield an additional US$ 12 billion of sales revenue. The PNG LNG Project at Caution Bay about 20 kilometres north-west of Port Moresby And so, in May 2014, Papua New Guinea became an LNG exporter, and is now producing about 8+ mta LNG per annum to customers in China, Japan and Taiwan - well above the original nameplate capacity of the LNG Plant. It got there because of fine operatorship on the part of ExxonMobil of a coherent joint venture. ExxonMobil was able to market the gas to top quality customers and obtain superior project financing. The only major disappointment has been the collapse several times in the crude oil prices below projections, and hence the LNG prices due to the indexing with crude oil. For the first year, some elevated prices were obtained, but clearly the fall of crude oil below US$ 30 per barrel in 2015 hurt the project economics, as did the see-sawing of prices in the aftermath of the Covid pandemic when prices plummeted to less than US$ 3 per MMBTU only to soar to over US$ 60 per MMBTU later.  The markets have calmed down now.  Access to lands for the project development came with resounding landowner consent after an enormous development forums were held at project level in Kokopo in New Britain and at licence level in each licence area. During the forums, the sharing of the benefit streams of the 2% royalty, 2% free equity from the State, 2% development levy, and other project grants including business development grants and infrastructure grants were discussed. Oddly, whilst some grants have been paid, some of the royalties and equity benefits have yet to be distributed due to some remaining uncertainties about landownership, and/or challenges based on rivalry. But notwithstanding this situation, the landowners have been extremely patient and have remained stoical. Indeed, the landowners have negotiated with the Government for the vendor financing of additional equity in the PNG LNG Project of about 4.2% that was promised to them in the main development forum in Kokopo. These equity holdings will be most valuable once the project finance has been paid down. The fact that the landowners see that value, needs to be recognised.   What is next? There are plans for additional LNG trains being added to the existing location for further LNG output.    In 2008, a significant gas discovery was made at the Elk-4 well of InterOil Ltd drilled in the Gulf Province. This was appraised by further drilling and the reservoir intersected in this well shown to be part of a much larger and better-quality reservoir by the drilling of the nearby Antelope 1 well.  Gas reserves of this field are estimated to be about 6.2 TCF (equivalent to about 1.2 billion barrels of oil). InterOil was a small entrepreneurial company with little experience, and whilst they tried to consider developing what became known as the Elk-Antelope gas field, they eventually sold down their assets to major international companies – Total of France and ExxonMobil of the USA, and to Papua New Guinea’s local oil and gas company – Oil Search, which merged with Santos in December 2021 in a $22 billion deal. The Antelope 2 appraisal well was tested by then licensee and operator, InterOil Ltd at a record, if not astonishingly, high gas flow rate of 705 million standard cubic feet of gas per day in 2009 (after PNG BN). Total, now rebranded as TotalEnergies, is the operator of the Papua LNG Project which seeks to develop this gas field separately, but in synergy with the PNG LNG Project.  After considerable delays, finalising a Gas Agreement with the State, they agreed upon outstanding issues and are now very much resolved to proceed with the project. TotalEnergies, as operator, submitted their application for the licences required for the Papua LNG Project on 28th May 2023.  The Papua LNG Project will develop the Elk-Antelope gas field and transmit the gas by a new pipeline to the Caution Bay site occupied by ExxonMobil. There Total will have four new electric driven LNG processing trains built, each of 1 million tonnes per year capacity next to the current trains of the PNG LNG Project. It is planned to place the remaining gas through ullage within the existing LNG plant of the PNG LNG Project, owned and operated by ExxonMobil and its partners. The condensate would be exported through the Caution Bay site at a separate loading facility, whilst some existing facilities of ExxonMobil will be utilised such as the site utilities, camps and the jetty, and some will be upgraded for consequent greater use. The Papua LNG Project aims to produce about 6 million tonnes LNG per annum (mta). The Papua LNG Project will produced gas from the Elk and Antelope gas field and transport it to liquefaction plant adjacent to the PNG LNG Project liquefaction plant (after TotalEnergies). The FEED (Front End Engineering and Design) work for the upstream field facilities started in July 2022 and was awarded to French firm Technip Energies NV. The FEED work for the downstream LNG plant started in March 2023 and was award together with the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contract to JGC Corporation in partnership with Hyundai Engineering & Construction Co., Ltd. TotalEnergies has publicly confirmed that the project remains on track for a Final Investment Decision (FID) in 2024 with the first LNG production anticipated in late 2028/early 2029. The project is estimated to cost about US$12 billion and it is expected to expand Papua New Guinea’s GDP by 50%, or so. At present, there has been no announcement of project financing or LNG sales and purchase agreements that might underpin the project, though TotalEnergies remains confident, and perhaps a little, but appropriately, tight-lipped on such matters!  The shareholders in the project are TotalEnergies (operator) with a 40.1% stake; ExxonMobil (following the acquisition of InterOil in Feb. 2017) holding 37.1%; Santos Ltd. (following the acquisition of Oil Search Ltd in Dec. 2021) with 22.8%; while the Papua New Guinea government retains the option to exercise a back-in right for up to a 22.5% interest at the time of the grant of the project licences. In an innovation of a kind, the development of the P’nyang LNG Project for which the Government has negotiated, agreed and signed a Gas Agreement with the companies is now planned to take place after the construction of the Papua LNG Project starting in 2028, and again lasting for about four years. This project will not involve the building of any new liquefaction facilities, but will rather transmit its produced gas to the nearest trunk gas pipeline of the PNG LNG Project. The gas will then be transported by the PNG LNG Project for a commercially agreed tariff and delivered to the PNG LNG Project LNG plant where it will be tolled through the facilities and exported.  The P’nyang gas will therefore be what is known as “back-fill” gas for the PNG LNG Project LNG plant when it has already depleted and processed the gas from its project dedicated gas fields. P’nyang gas will therefore optimise gas throughput of the PNG LNG Project pipeline and facilities extending their life and making further income both for the companies and the Government. This obviates the need for new facilities and represents a significant capital saving.  The P’nyang LNG Project is estimated to cost about US$ 9 billion and seeks to develop about 4.4 TCF of gas reserves (about 860 million barrels of oil equivalent) and should extend the useful life of the PNG LNG Project facilities by about 10 years to around 2046. Gas Agreement for the P’nyang gas field development is signed 23 February 2022 Gas development beyond what is described above depends on linking other discovered gas fields that are smaller and more remote to the infrastructure and the development of yet-to-be- discovered gas fields. Exploration density in Papua New Guinea is very low due to limited infrastructure and access to petroliferous areas, so one can reasonably anticipate that if exploration drilling is encouraged significantly more gas reserves might be identified. With the combined processing capacity of the ExxonMobil-led PNG LNG Project (8.3 million tonnes per year) and the TotalEnergies-led Papua LNG Project (4 million tonnes per year), there will be an aggregate capacity to process 13.7 million tonnes of LNG per year (equivalent to about 300,000 barrels of oil per day). Some have dared to talk that a LNG output of 20 million tonnes per annum is possible for Papua New Guinea in the foreseeable future. However, a few hurdles remain, primary amongst which is a lack of new wildcat drilling to find new gas fields, perhaps due to uncertain and undefined petroleum sector policy. Papua New Guinea can still be successful in producing oil and gas well into the future, but it has to learn that it takes more than oil and gas reserves to create a viable and sustainable production industry.  A review of its past successes should indicate what it needs to do. It has the natural gas resources in volumes enough to keep the current and planned trains filled, and perhaps more trains, but it must continue to be proactive in all aspects of gas development planning, promotion and participation. Importantly, the promised benefits to landowner in particular and to the wider public need to be delivered by the Government.    Any lapse into baseless self-indulgent or impractical schemes could readily spoil what is essential a very good framework for continued gas development investment, notwithstanding the plans to change the regime structure to one of production sharing.  The future of PNG’s gas industry is firmly in the hands of the Government with excellent operators to assist it.
May 16, 2024
PNG has a chronic shortage of suitably experienced and qualified seafarers, especially higher-ranking officers.  The current shortfall is estimated at 30 percent and is predicted to worsen as vessel traffic increases to meet the logistics requirements of the imminent Papua LNG construction phase.  The shortage of seafarers in PNG is both a ‘supply’ and a ‘demand’ problem.  In terms of supply, not only is PNG not training and developing as many seafarers as the country requires, but a substantial number of its older, experienced seafarers have retired.  Additionally, some of PNG’s very best seafaring professionals have secured employment with international maritime operations, further draining the available pool of qualified seafarers. The demand for PNG seafarers has grown because of the increase in vessels required to service PNG’s communities and businesses, especially its major resource developers.  More crew are needed to operate the larger volume of vessels and demand will peak in the next couple of years given that sea and river transport is the primary freight mode for the construction phase of the Total led Papua LNG project.  Strong demand will continue beyond this peak given further developments on the horizon such as the Wafi-Golpu gold mine in the country’s north and expansion of the P’nyang LNG project. The Papua LNG development is the first maritime-supported resource development of its scale since the construction of the Ok Tedi mine in the 1980’s.  The equivalent development of the PNG LNG project’s facilities required a land transport fleet of more than 600 trucks to deliver over 26,000 loads of cargo.  The current 30 percent shortfall of adequately qualified and experienced seafarers will likely grow to around 50 percent as the number of vessels servicing the Papua LNG construction phase increases. It's not just senior officers that PNG lacks but seafarers with specific technical skillsets such as those required for vessels that service the nation’s growing oil and gas sector.  Offshore vessels currently being contracted to LNG projects (and potentially in the future to offshore projects such as Twinza’s Pasca A in the Gulf of Papua) are required to comply with the stringent operational requirements of the Oil Companies International Marine Forum (OCIMF).  Compliance for PNG operators will be increasingly challenging without appropriately skilled crew. The training and development of PNG seafarers for the oil and gas sector is currently limited by the absence of specific technical training programmes– both theoretical and practical.  No PNG institution offers the necessary course work and very few (if any) offshore operators provide crucial ‘at sea’ training to PNG’s young seafarers.  Given that PNG shippers need seafarers who have specialist technical skills in order to win contracts with oil and gas companies; and oil and gas companies in turn need shipping services, it makes sense that shippers and developers work together to grow and upskill the required workforce.
May 16, 2024
PNG has a chronic shortage of suitably experienced and qualified seafarers, especially higher-ranking officers.  The current shortfall is estimated at 30 percent and is predicted to worsen as vessel traffic increases to meet the logistics requirements of the imminent Papua LNG construction phase.  The shortage of seafarers in PNG is both a ‘supply’ and a ‘demand’ problem.  In terms of supply, not only is PNG not training and developing as many seafarers as the country requires, but a substantial number of its older, experienced seafarers have retired.  Additionally, some of PNG’s very best seafaring professionals have secured employment with international maritime operations, further draining the available pool of qualified seafarers. The demand for PNG seafarers has grown because of the increase in vessels required to service PNG’s communities and businesses, especially its major resource developers.  More crew are needed to operate the larger volume of vessels and demand will peak in the next couple of years given that sea and river transport is the primary freight mode for the construction phase of the Total led Papua LNG project.  Strong demand will continue beyond this peak given further developments on the horizon such as the Wafi-Golpu gold mine in the country’s north and expansion of the P’nyang LNG project. The Papua LNG development is the first maritime-supported resource development of its scale since the construction of the Ok Tedi mine in the 1980’s.  The equivalent development of the PNG LNG project’s facilities required a land transport fleet of more than 600 trucks to deliver over 26,000 loads of cargo.  The current 30 percent shortfall of adequately qualified and experienced seafarers will likely grow to around 50 percent as the number of vessels servicing the Papua LNG construction phase increases. It's not just senior officers that PNG lacks but seafarers with specific technical skillsets such as those required for vessels that service the nation’s growing oil and gas sector.  Offshore vessels currently being contracted to LNG projects (and potentially in the future to offshore projects such as Twinza’s Pasca A in the Gulf of Papua) are required to comply with the stringent operational requirements of the Oil Companies International Marine Forum (OCIMF).  Compliance for PNG operators will be increasingly challenging without appropriately skilled crew. The training and development of PNG seafarers for the oil and gas sector is currently limited by the absence of specific technical training programmes– both theoretical and practical.  No PNG institution offers the necessary course work and very few (if any) offshore operators provide crucial ‘at sea’ training to PNG’s young seafarers.  Given that PNG shippers need seafarers who have specialist technical skills in order to win contracts with oil and gas companies; and oil and gas companies in turn need shipping services, it makes sense that shippers and developers work together to grow and upskill the required workforce.
May 06, 2024
Ok Tedi Mining Limited (OTML) yesterday, presented a dummy cheque of K100,000.00 to the Mineral Resources Authority (MRA), to consolidate its position as a Major ‘Gold’ Sponsor of the MRA organized Geoscience, Exploration & Extraction (GEE) Conference 2024. The conference will be held on August 7-9, 2024, at the APEC Haus, Port Moresby. This is the second time that the MRA will be staging this two-yearly conference. The inaugural conference was held in 2022. OTML’s General Manager Social Performance and Sustainability, Mr. Jesse Pile, and Manager Corporate Affairs, Mr. Dexter Wagambie, presented the dummy cheque signifying the sponsorship, to the Patron of the GEE Conferences and Managing Director of the MRA, Mr. Jerry Garry. Mr. Garry when receiving the sponsorship, expressed the organising committee’s and the MRA’s gratitude towards OTML for its generous support to the event. He said that the contribution was very important in enabling the staging of the conference. Mr. Garry said the mining and the geoscience community in the country has not had a platform such as the GEE Conferences for the last two-three decades, where geoscience and engineering knowledge and ideas could be shared and discussed as learnings for the betterment of the industry as well as for the country. “We have people who are doing research work in Ok Tedi, in their laboratory to overcome recovery problems, or overcome metallurgical problems. There are people who are working in different parts such as Kainantu. They maybe looking at different ore types and there maybe new findings. But there is no medium in this country to share those new findings and foster growth within the scientific community, and GEE is now the appropriate avenue to do that.” The MRA MD appealed to other industry partners and stakeholders to support the conference. Mr Pile said OTML as a state-owned entity felt that it was only proper to be in the forefront of the conferences like this. He said this is because GEE would contribute towards the development of PNG in terms of research and human resources development. He said: “This contribution is building on from the very healthy relationship OTML has with MRA. From our observations, MRA is a leading organisation amongst other government authorities and agencies. The manner in which you run your organisation is professional, and Ok Tedi finds it fitting to work with your organisation, because of your professionalism. So this contribution is building on from what has been established over the years.” The GEE Conference aims to bring together leading academics, scientists, researchers and geoscientists, to share experiences and share research results in geological exploration and mineral extraction. It will provide a premier inter-disciplinary platform for researchers, practitioners and educators, to present and discuss latest innovations, trends, concerns and practical solutions to challenges encountered throughout the business spectrum of the mining business. The conference will be the premier meeting place where stakeholders can connect and network with others in the field of geoscience, from learners to practitioners to decision makers. Presenters and participants will come from PNG and international based organizations as well as individuals, government agencies and Non-Government Organizations (NGOs).
May 06, 2024
Ok Tedi Mining Limited (OTML) yesterday, presented a dummy cheque of K100,000.00 to the Mineral Resources Authority (MRA), to consolidate its position as a Major ‘Gold’ Sponsor of the MRA organized Geoscience, Exploration & Extraction (GEE) Conference 2024. The conference will be held on August 7-9, 2024, at the APEC Haus, Port Moresby. This is the second time that the MRA will be staging this two-yearly conference. The inaugural conference was held in 2022. OTML’s General Manager Social Performance and Sustainability, Mr. Jesse Pile, and Manager Corporate Affairs, Mr. Dexter Wagambie, presented the dummy cheque signifying the sponsorship, to the Patron of the GEE Conferences and Managing Director of the MRA, Mr. Jerry Garry. Mr. Garry when receiving the sponsorship, expressed the organising committee’s and the MRA’s gratitude towards OTML for its generous support to the event. He said that the contribution was very important in enabling the staging of the conference. Mr. Garry said the mining and the geoscience community in the country has not had a platform such as the GEE Conferences for the last two-three decades, where geoscience and engineering knowledge and ideas could be shared and discussed as learnings for the betterment of the industry as well as for the country. “We have people who are doing research work in Ok Tedi, in their laboratory to overcome recovery problems, or overcome metallurgical problems. There are people who are working in different parts such as Kainantu. They maybe looking at different ore types and there maybe new findings. But there is no medium in this country to share those new findings and foster growth within the scientific community, and GEE is now the appropriate avenue to do that.” The MRA MD appealed to other industry partners and stakeholders to support the conference. Mr Pile said OTML as a state-owned entity felt that it was only proper to be in the forefront of the conferences like this. He said this is because GEE would contribute towards the development of PNG in terms of research and human resources development. He said: “This contribution is building on from the very healthy relationship OTML has with MRA. From our observations, MRA is a leading organisation amongst other government authorities and agencies. The manner in which you run your organisation is professional, and Ok Tedi finds it fitting to work with your organisation, because of your professionalism. So this contribution is building on from what has been established over the years.” The GEE Conference aims to bring together leading academics, scientists, researchers and geoscientists, to share experiences and share research results in geological exploration and mineral extraction. It will provide a premier inter-disciplinary platform for researchers, practitioners and educators, to present and discuss latest innovations, trends, concerns and practical solutions to challenges encountered throughout the business spectrum of the mining business. The conference will be the premier meeting place where stakeholders can connect and network with others in the field of geoscience, from learners to practitioners to decision makers. Presenters and participants will come from PNG and international based organizations as well as individuals, government agencies and Non-Government Organizations (NGOs).

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