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INVITATION TO THE 36TH AUSTRALIA PAPUA NEW GUINEA BUSINESS FORUM AND TRADE EXPO
by PNG Business News - March 09, 2021
The Australia Papua New Guinea Business Council and the Business Council of Papua New Guinea are pleased to be re-launching the 36th Australia Papua New Guinea Business Forum and Trade Expo, which was deferred from 2020 to 24 to 26 May 2021. For the first time ever, this event will be held concurrently in Brisbane (at the Royal International Convention Centre), Port Moresby (at Hilton Port Moresby Hotel) and also online, with a shared speaking program.
The Forum theme for this year is “Reimagining the Future Papua New Guinea”. The theme aims to capture the important message that Australia and Papua New Guinea along with the rest of the world, must move and pivot with the times and circumstances in order to prosper. It also looks to advance discussion about greater diversity in the PNG economy. Coronavirus and all its related restrictions and issues, along with advancements in technology mean that we must, collectively, think of different ways to work in trade, economy and indeed life. Online connectivity appears to be one of the important forms of communication that will continue for the foreseeable future.
This Forum is distinctly established as the leading annual bilateral business meeting between Australia and Papua New Guinea, and builds on the work both Councils have done over more than three decades in growing the bilateral business relationship.
The program for the Forum includes an overview of the political and economic climate, particularly issues which affect business and investment, and will include specific sessions by expert presenters on topics such as the Covid-19 Pandemic, emerging economic business opportunities in PNG, agribusiness, infrastructure, SME growth, Papua New Guineans in the Australian labour market, and resources.
Key government ministers from Australia and Papua New Guinea, and a range of other expert speakers, have been invited to address the Forum to inform business representatives of policy issues in their portfolio relevant to business, and they will be able to join us from whichever location they are in, whether Brisbane, Port Moresby or elsewhere. Delegates will be able to engage in lively interaction with presenters in most sessions either live in person, or via the online platform with a Q&A feature. Video recordings of presentations will become available online soon after they are given so that delegates may go back and revisit portions they may have missed.
There is something in the program for just about anyone who has an interest in the bilateral business and economic relationship and in the economy of Papua New Guinea.
Delegates will be able to connect via the online platform by sending messages and/or booking appointment times with each other, particularly if they are not attending the Forum at the same venue.
The Forum will again feature a Trade Expo for Australian and Papua New Guinean companies wishing to use the opportunity to match their goods and services to clients and purchasers in each country, and to broaden their business relationship. An innovative development this year is that all the trade booths will be online, with a limited number of physical booths at each location (as well as online) due to Covid restrictions. Booth exhibitors will be able to display their corporate logo, upload documents and short videos for visitors, include links to their own website, and chat one-on-one with delegates online, who can request meeting times with them via the online platform. This is a new, exciting and pioneering way to do things, and we will endeavour to have answers for you immediately should you encounter any problems while using the online platform.
Register early for this conference as in-person spots at each location are limited and demand will be heavy. To register, complete the online booking process at https://events.apngbc.org.au/event/36APNG/. Please take care to show where/how you wish to participate. There are many new features that we will be introducing during this Forum as we look to resume regular business to business engagement, which has been so disrupted during the last year. This is a very good value conference.
Enquiries about registration, Trade Expo bookings and accommodation should be directed to the secretariat of the Australia Papua New Guinea Business Council, on telephone + 61 7 3348 5142 or by e-mail at email@example.com or to the Business Council of Papua New Guinea on telephone + 675 323 8465, fax + 675 323 5162 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We look forward to hosting you at the 36th Australia Papua New Guinea Business Forum and Trade Expo on 24-26 May 2021, whether in Brisbane, Port Moresby, or Online.
PNG Business News - May 03, 2021
Agriculture and Extractive Industries Projected to Expand in 2021
According to the Asian Development Bank's 2021 forecast, the extractive and agricultural industries are projected to expand in 2021. Mine and quarry production could rise in 2021 and 2022, according to the ADB's recently issued forecast for 2021, as favourable international metal prices spur production. The Lihir and Ok Tedi mines, both multibillion-dollar ventures, are projected to increase gold production in 2021 after a tough year in 2020, while oil and gas production is expected to plateau. However, two new mineral and petroleum developments on the horizon, the Wafi-Golpu gold and copper mine and the Papua LNG project, both multibillion-dollar projects, have the potential to drive substantial development. In 2021, Papua LNG is scheduled to begin front-end engineering and design. Meanwhile, the agriculture, forestry, and fisheries sectors are projected to rise by more than 3% in 2021, owing to low demand in 2020. If conditions improve, transportation and storage, hotels and lodging, and renovation can all improve. Capital spending is expected to increase by 16.9% in 2021 and another 9.7% in 2022, according to the National Budget for 2021. The resulting stimulus would boost growth and local industries, but successful implementation would depend on development partners' support, according to the outlook.
PNG Business News - November 09, 2020
Cabinet Approves K10.2 million for COVID Research
Cabinet has approved K10.2 million in assisting COVID-19 research, including the development of research laboratories and the procurement of sampling of drugs.According to Prime Minister James Marape, the funds may also be used on the drug trials - if the Health Department approves. He said that this initiative was a “genuine pursuit by some of our own young scientists and doctors”.“Based on their research, they established a hypothesis that they can find a cure for the Covid-19,” he said. “I am not here to stop the ingenuity and brilliance of Papua New Guineans, hence, we offer our support but we will do it properly through a State-sanctioned process. All NEC documents eventually become public when associated documents to pronounce government programmes and policies are released.”In addition, Marape said that the money will be used for research and that organizations such as the University of Papua New Guinea, the Health Department and the PNG Institute of Medical Research will all be a part of it. He added that the bulk is for the re-building of the science faculty laboratories at the University PNG and is not intended for the company Niugini Biomed by scientists and doctors. “And if the medical and scientific community through peer review gives the okay, then the next phase of the work that will involve drug procurement and laboratory mix and trial will proceed,” he said.
PNG Business News - December 09, 2020
Economist: Economy Will Be Weak in 2021
An economist said that in light of the pandemic, the economy will come off as weak next year. According to Westpac senior economist Justin Smirk, “We expect that there will be weak economic growth in 2021 following the after-shock and recovery of the Covid-19 on businesses and the economy with mining output also expected to be low. The medium-term recovery will be driven by non-resource sectors such as agriculture, fisheries and forestry, dependent on the return to production of Porgera mine.”However, Prime Minister James Marape said recently that a budget analysis done by an accounting firm said that the economy is set to rebound at 3.5 per cent next year. This is due to the recovery across most industries and improved global demand and consumption.“This will see growth rise to an estimated 10.6 per cent in nominal terms (which is an increase from an initial 7.4 per cent forecast in the 2021 Budget strategy paper) totalling K90.3 billion and is expected to increase in 2022 to reach an estimated growth at K99.4 billion,” Marape said. “The forecast increase of 10 per cent per annum in both 2021 and 2022 is the highest in PNG’s history and is larger than the growth from 2013 to 2015 when the PNG LNG project commenced production. Economic growth is projected to grow at a steady annual growth rate of 3.1 per cent over the medium term, in line with an estimated 3.7 per cent growth in the non-mining sector.”Marape said these figures represent a vote of confidence for the policies and programmes of the government.
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PNG Business News - June 15, 2021
PNG Vanilla Company Partners Expo2020 Team
Dr. Nancy Irwin (left) with the Deputy Commissioner General for Expo2020 and Head of the PNG Expo2020 Secretariat, Mrs. Jacinta Warakai-Manua began the partnership to tell the PNG Vanilla story in Dubai, by exchanging ideas in Port Moresby last week. A vanilla production and export company is partnering with the PNG Expo2020 Team to promote their products in the Dubai World Exposition that starts in October this year. KAMAPIM, a company working with landowners in the Madang and Morobe Provinces produces top quality vanilla beans and is already exporting to the EU market. The Managing Director of the company Dr. Nancy Irwin, met with the PNG Commissioner General to Expo2020 Ambassador Joshua Kalinoe and his Deputy Mrs. Jacinta Warakai-Manua in Port Moresby last week to firm up the arrangements. Dr. Irwin said Kamapim (pidgin for develop and to improve) concentrates its efforts in producing the best quality bean for the international market through quality assurance production methods. “PNG farmers can grow anything, they have instinctive ability to grow well any crops. When I first started the project, the quality of the beans were poor, full of fungus due to lack of processing knowledge. We saw huge potential of the organically grown beans and started working with landowners through a cooperative production and marketing structure to improve quality” “The company provide extension services to farmers and buy the beans directly, ensuring farmers are paid a fair price for their efforts”, she said. Dr Irwin said the beans are tested internationally and are consistently classed as the top-quality A grade level. “While PNG has a good perception of growing environment friendly organic vanilla beans, the challenge is for the relevant Government authorities to work with farmers to improve quality. I believe the cooperative production methods applied by our company, Kamapim, could be used nationally as one of the models to improve quality for the export market as well as to maximize revenue gain for farmers”, Dr. Irwin said. She said the company is looking forward to partnering with the PNG Expo2020 Team to tell the PNG story and to connect with niche importers in Dubai and the Arab world in general. Dr. Irwin said the company would promote its products in specially branded PNG Expo2020 containers to create visibility for the country as well as to preserve quality at the company’s cost.
PNG Business News - June 15, 2021
PNGEITI Praises Open Dialogue to Reopen Porgera Mine
The PNG Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (PNGEITI) has praised the open stakeholder dialogue culminating in reaching consensus to re-open the Pogera Mine in Enga. Parties in April this year sanctioned a “Framework Agreement for the New Pogera Project” which spells out the roadmap to reopen the mine. Mark Bristow, CEO and President of Barrick Gold last week explained key elements of “Framework Agreement for the New Pogera Project” at a public forum at the Piam Oval in Pogera witnessed by PNG Prime Minister James Marape, landowners and other leaders. In the new agreement, PNG stakeholders will together own a 51 % equity stake in the mine while Barrick Niguini Limited (BNL), a joint venture company in which Barrick and Zijin Mining Group each own 50% will hold 49 %. BNL will remain the mine operator. At the end of the first ten year period, the PNG stakeholders will have the option to purchase BNL’s 49 % PNGEITI Head of Secretariat Lucas Alkan remarked that the open discussion throughout the negotiation process on the part of the mine operating lead, Government and landowners has culminated in this agreement signed happily by all parties. “We at the PNGEITI congratulate the Government and the project lead Barrick Gold and other stakeholders for reaching a consensus decision to reopen the mine. “Pogera has been an economic powerhouse for many years and people in the country have been waiting for the outcome. “We commend the Prime Minister, the President and CEO of Barrick Gold Mr. Mark Bristow for the leadership in ensuring that the negotiations were done in the transparent and open manner. “PNG Extractive Industries Transparency highly encourages such openness in the negotiating process for resources benefits and importantly the responsibilities that each stakeholder must take on to ensure smooth flow of proceeds. “We look forward to working with the Government and the project operator in the areas of transparency and accountability to help derive best value for all stakeholders. PNGEITI commitment to reporting on developments in the mining and petroleum space is becoming stronger with new reporting dimensions taking shape as we making progress in promoting transparency and accountability in the PNG mining and petroleum industry” Mr. Alkan said.
PNG Business News - June 14, 2021
BPNG Goes For Review
Treasurer Ian Ling-Stuckey has revealed the terms of reference for a review of the Bank of PNG, as well as the members of the review panel. Former Chief Secretary Robert Igara will lead the study, which was planned in the Supplementary Budget for 2020. Former central bank governor Sir Wilson Kamit and Australian professor Dr Stephen Howes are the two members. “These very eminent people, all of whom have detailed experience of the PNG financial system and reform, will be working to a term of reference approved recently by the NEC,” Ling-Stuckey said. “It is the first review of the central bank and the Central Banking Act 2002 since Sir Mekere Morauta’s financial system reforms when he was prime minister from 1999 to 2002. “Much has changed since then, and the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, along with substantial technological advances, have made the need for a review even more urgent. “The aim is to modernise the bank and the legislation in line with international developments, and make it more responsive to prevailing circumstances while preserving its independence.” The study is scheduled to be finished in time for Parliament's November session. “An independent advisory group was also established by the late Sir Mekere when looking at the changes that led to the Central Banking Act 2000,” he said. “Igara, currently the University of Papua New Guinea chancellor, was chief secretary at the time, and Sir Wilson was the governor of the Central Bank. “Prof Howes, head of the Development Policy Centre at the Australian National University, has long been involved in PNG research and advice and consultation, particularly in relation to national development.” Reference: The National (8 June 2021). “BPNG going for review”.