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Mano: PNG Air Employees will be Kept
by PNG Business News - May 03, 2021
According to the company's board member, all PNG Air employees will be retained after the acquisition by Link PNG.
The key goal of the acquisition, according to PNG Air chairman Augustine Mano, is to achieve a viable airline industry in order to secure PNG Air's future, creditors, and personnel said a letter from the board to management and staff of PNG Air.
He said the board had reviewed and considered all practicable alternatives for reforming the company to resolve the continuing effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on domestic and foreign travel when it decided to endorse the 40 per cent shareholding to Link PNG.
He stated that this agreement needs ICCC approval and that an application to that effect has been filed, with shareholder approval expected shortly.
Mr Mano stated that the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed in January 2021, as well as the recommendations submitted and staff questions, have all been resolved.
He also said that all employees would be kept.
PNG Air will continue to operate as a standalone carrier with its own board of directors and management.
This is done while maintaining the identity, with the exception of areas where resource maximisation is needed to allow shareholder returns.
He promised that rivalry with Air Niugini will continue until cost-cutting measures are identified and introduced.
He went on to say that the benefits from this joint venture would help all core stakeholders, including employees and the general public, who will benefit from lower airfares.
PNG Business News - April 29, 2021
Link PNG Reapplying to Buy Minority Stake in PNG Air
Link PNG and PNG Air have reported that they have reapplied to the ICCC for Link PNG to buy a minority stake in PNG Air. PNG Air and Link PNG also agree that ICCC acceptance would help Papua New Guineans and visitors. The planned joint venture between Link PNG and MRDC is focused on PNG Air being an independent airline, setting its own airfares and selling its own tickets separately from Air Niugini, according to Link PNG chairman Sir Kostas Constantinou and PNG Air chairman Augustine Mano. In a joint statement, both chairmen emphasized the importance of PNG continuing to have two separate carriers, PNG Air and Air Niugini, as well as a competitive domestic market. They mentioned that COVID-19 has lasted much longer than anyone predicted and is continuing to have a negative impact on both airlines; thus, while it is vital that we continue to work independently on a commercial basis, it is also critical that the airlines take advantage of this ability to reduce costs. “World aviation has been badly damaged by COVID-19, including in our region where the Fijian government has had to issue loan guarantees for K788 million to support Fiji Airways, whilst elsewhere governments have had to pay billions of Kina to keep their airlines alive. “We believe this move if approved, will ensure PNG’s airline industry is profitable, sustainable and competitive without having to rely on Government support. “Both airlines are ultimately owned by the people of PNG, either the taxpayer, contributors to superannuation or as a landowner so it is critical both airlines are viable.” The plan is focused on Link PNG maintaining a minority share status and all commercial roles being distinct and autonomous, according to the chairmen. the selling of all PNG Air airline tickets, including all pricing and yield control, as well as all personnel involved in these functions; PNG Air's publicity, which includes existing sales offices as well as a separate website; PNG Air's board and management will be independent; all cabin crew, sales personnel, and check-in staff will wear PNG Air uniforms; and all of PNG Air's aircraft will be painted in PNG Air livery. Back office activities that can be handled more effectively between the two carriers, as well as more efficient fleet use, will be the main integration advantages. “We believe there is a compelling case for creating a stronger independent PNG Air, across a wider network, as well as ensuring job security,” they stated. “We will also ensure the savings created will be passed back onto our customers through more affordable airfares; with the lower prices resulting from economies of scale and through the considerable cost efficiencies that are available.” The idea, according to Sir Kostas and Mano, would favour airline passengers as well as ensure job protection for both airlines and the continuation of the PNG Air brand in our skies. They also stated that “With the savings, we will generate, we will be able to pass this back onto our customers through more affordable airfares.” Before the joint venture can be finalized, both Link PNG and PNG Air will need both regulatory and shareholder approvals, including from ICCC.
PNG Business News - March 25, 2021
PNG Ports Corporation Records K83mil Profit
PNG Ports Corporation has reported a profit of K83 million for the full year of 2019. This permitted Kumul Consolidated Holdings (KCH) to receive a full-year dividend payment of K21 million, which was finalized yesterday with the presentation of K11.4 million to KCH as a second payment following the first part of K9.6 million paid in November. Chairman Kepas Wali said PNG Ports had had a challenging two years, with the Covid-19 impacting the majority of its business. “We saw a decline in shipment and cargo through our ports, but because management instituted certain stringent measures in management and costs, PNG Ports has been able to maintain a healthy bottom line,” he said. “Despite the Covid-19, we have been able to maintain the ports operationally. Management quickly introduced certain protocols at the ports when the pandemic hit to keep the ports operating. There wasn’t any stage that the ports were closed down. They (PNG Ports Corporation) were able to separate the operation of the ships from the shore so shipping continued and cargo was still transmitted through our shores.” Wali also explained that the dividend was based on a loan agreement they had with Bank South Pacific (BSP), which stipulated that only 25% of profits could be paid out as dividends. The dividend payment for 2019 was timely, according to KCH managing director Isikeli Taureka, since the money would be injected into other state-owned enterprises (SOEs) that were struggling during the Covid-19 period. “One of the things we appreciated is that apart from the major ports, most of the secondary ports around the country are at least recovering cost and breaking even.” The dividend payment was agreed by State Enterprise Minister William Duma. PNG Ports, according to Duma, has been a reliable performer over the years. He stated that the K21 million spent in 2019 was a good effort. “We need every toea and the K21 million is a lot of money and in times like these millions of kina makes a big difference,” he said. PNG Ports Corporation has also paid the government a total of K43 million in royalties.
PNG Business News - March 31, 2021
PNG Ports Explains Their Decision to Deal with Covid-19
COVID-19 had a major impact on Papua New Guinea's exports and port movement, but the PNG Ports Corporation had taken political decisions to handle the situation. In recent months, the world has seen and continues to see a significant shift in everyday lives, which has had significant implications for industry, commerce, and transportation. The pandemic's emergence altered both economic and trade forecasts for 2020. New predictions have reduced forecasts to negative 4.9 per cent, down from an estimate of 3.6 per cent increase in container trade worldwide in the fourth quarter of 2019 to 2.5 per cent in January 2020. PNG Ports chairman Kepas Wali clarified that the company's earnings were the result of tight cost-cutting steps and prudent decisions taken by management. Last year, he said, the closing of borders and prohibitions surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic struck PNG Ports hard, which is dependent on trade. Despite COVID-19, PNG Ports has continued to operate all of its ports. “When COVID-19 hit the country and the world, the management of PNG Ports worked quickly and instituted certain protocols and prevention measures just so we can maintain our ports operations,” he said. “The management’s quick response to the situation has made it possible for all ports to operate during the hit by the pandemic through until now.” He said the pandemic's consequences on the company were expensive, but PNG Ports is happy with the positive results obtained by their management's swift reaction and aims to continue this going forward.
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PNG Business News - May 13, 2021
National Airport Corporation to Focus on Redevelopment Projects
The National Airports Corporation plans to devote more resources to the redevelopment projects at Kavieng, Tari, and Mendi airports as part of the Civil Aviation Growth Investment Program. With the exception of three airports, all airports under the CADIP program are on a budget, according to NAC acting managing director Rex Kiponge. Apart from Jackson Airport in Port Moresby, Kiponge claims that the majority of the country's airports are unable to handle the newly launched F100 aircraft. “The introduction of F100 aircraft has deteriorated the condition of runways in PNG. Under CADIP, fencing and runway length deficiencies will now meet the F100 and ICAO requirements. CADIP was implemented to meet the minimum PNG Civil Aviation Rules (CARS) and the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) standards and recommended practices in all the 22 airports in the country. “The F100 aircraft require a minimum runway length of 1900 metres –– only three airports meet this requirement.” The F100 will be able to land at 12 airports thanks to a CADIP runway length upgrade. Port Moresby is now the only province that meets the operating criteria for F100 planes. Standby control, security fencing, apron parking, runway, taxiway, and apron strength, and a runway length suitable for takeoff at maximum payload are all part of the 22 airport upgrades. Kiponge recently visited the three airports and expressed his satisfaction with the development. Contractors have already finished construction on the security fence at Kavieng Airport, and work on the runway extension is going well. Once the runway extension is complete, the contractors can begin work on the terminal. He mentioned that the runway extension at Tari Airport is complete, and contractors are currently working on the apron, which will be finished until the runway extension is completed. Owing to the contractors' inability to obtain materials for the runway at Mendi Airport, NAC has requested that they redo the runway before moving on to the other areas. “Despite whatever issues within NAC, I will ensure that all 22 NAC’s airports undergoing upgrading will be completed and I will put in a lot of efforts and focus to makes certain work is done well and completed,” Kiponge said.
PNG Business News - May 13, 2021
Govt to Focus on Downstream Processing
The government is putting a lot of effort into encouraging downstream production in the region. This was said by Prime Minister James Marape during a visit to Paradise Foods Company Limited. “We are focused on downstream processing as far as going forward is concerned –– instead of exporting raw products,” said Marape. “We want to go downstream to satisfy our local markets as well as export to economies around us.” PNG is fortunate, according to Marape, to have access to 60% of the world's gross domestic product (GDP) through the APEC network. “As well as, not just the APEC network, but in the vicinity of PNG’s accessibility to markets, we have over 4 billion people from the Pacific, Northern Asia, Western Asia and Northeast Asia put together. “So to satisfy our local markets in PNG for our 8 million-plus people, as well as the opportunity of exporting to markets closest to us like our neighbouring countries.” Marape has stated that he supports downstream production and marketing of PNG's natural resources both locally and internationally. “Today, I am privileged to visit an industry that has been at work since 1945, and I’d like to thank Paradise Foods Company Limited for doing a wonderful job and feeding our country.” Marape promised that the government will help the industry and market.
PNG Business News - May 13, 2021
Mayur Discusses Power Plant Project in Lae
Mayur Resources Ltd says it has formed an ongoing relationship with the State negotiation team to discuss and finalize a power purchase agreement (PPA) for its planned power plant in Lae, Morobe. The organization was waiting for the State negotiation team's makeup to be finalized and signed off, according to managing director Paul Mulder. After that, he said, the Enviro Energy Park (EEP) project's final discussions and negotiations will begin. Mayur's planned 52.5-megawatt EEP project is an advanced power plant that will produce more efficient and cheaper electricity than current solutions by combining conventional thermal energy (sourced from the company's wholly-owned Depot Creek project), solar, and biomass woodchip, while also supplying co-generated steam to nearby industrial users who were burning diesel for their steam needs. The EEP, which is near Lae, will also have steam as a by-product for local industrial uses, and potential dual fuel systems will allow for the use of diesel. “The energy park would balance the need for new environmentally friendly technologies and reliable energy,” Mulder said.