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IPA Ensures Proper Review of Investment Promotion Act

by PNG Business News - April 06, 2021

The Investment Promotion Authority (IPA) is committed to ensuring that the Investment Promotion Act is properly reviewed in order to carry out its mandated duties and obligations.

This is to ensure that all international and domestic investments are encouraged and facilitated.

In its second issue of the Opportunity Newsletter for 2021, the IPA said the suggested changes to the Investment Promotion Act would keep PNG open to foreign investment while improving mechanisms for updating the Cottage Business Activities List (CBAL), also known as the Reserved Activities List (RAL), and introducing a Restricted Activities List.

The proposed amendments and subsequent legislation would define these practices.

The changes also provide better review procedures for determining the practices are covered by these lists.

Governance changes are being integrated into the amendments to strengthen IPA's ability to handle the international certification scheme as the first point of touch for foreign investors in PNG.

The reforms will provide a host of regulations aimed at improving enforcement and oversight of individual certificate holders as well as the foreign investment scheme as a whole.

This data is essential for promoting prudent foreign investment in PNG, as well as providing evidence for framework upgrades over time.

The inclusion of the Registrar of Foreign Investment, a dedicated position responsible for the management of the foreign investment scheme in order to enhance overall compliance and oversight, is a major improvement.

The reforms would modify the existing certification system by introducing a system close to that of corporation registration, with a simplified and faster international certification process.

Obtaining an international credential after applying will currently take more than a month.

The Registrar will accept registrations unless specified disqualifying requirements are met.

This would give foreign investors more clarity about the forms of foreign investment that are permitted in the region.

That would also allow for quicker international entity certification since the Registrar will be able to accept applications on a rolling basis.

The review started in 2019 as part of the National Government's plan to help Micro, Small, and Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSMEs) develop and become the economy's backbone.


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