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PPL and ABG Sign MoU to Explore Possible Energy Resources

by PNG Business News - May 18, 2021

PNG Power Limited (PPL) and the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG) recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to explore possible energy resources for power generation in the area.

This MoU was signed following a conversation between the ABG and PNG Power last year about working together to grow the energy market in AROB.

A follow-up meeting between the two parties was held in Buka in February of this year, confirming the coordination and relationship of the MoU that established the Bougainville Energy Development Steering Committee, which has the authority to carry out the obligations decided upon by the parties in the MoU and Terms of Reference (ToR).

According to both PPL and ABG, main responsibilities in the ToR include the completion and expansion of operations at all installed power stations in Bougainville, the operationalisation of proposed rural electrification power distribution networks, the construction of the Ramazon Hydropower project and other schemes, and the formulation of MTDs for energy development from the new ABG-PNG Power Energy development plan 2014-2030.

This will include facilitating the creation of an energy or power supply corporation for Bougainville, the transition of power over electricity supplies, the identification of alternative energy sources, and the development of a memorandum of agreement based on the MoU.

The signing of this MoU, according to Vice Minister for Bougainville Affairs Peter Tsiamalili Jr, is in accordance with the signing of the SHARP deal.

PPL, according to Mr Tsiamalili, is the first state-owned company to take this first step toward realizing the SHARP agreement's goals.

“The most fundamental enabler in any country is power.

“This step towards having an organisation that in few years time, Bougainville will be able to have its own entity that will regulate and manage its own power, it’s significant,” he said.

“This shows the confidence of what this government has over this relationship.

“I commend both technical teams in putting together this MoU that can articulate the process by which will enable Bougainville to have its own power.”

PNG Power Limited managing director Flagon Bekker congratulated ABG on reaching this landmark and stated that PPL would work with ABG to ensure a smooth transition from PPL to complete ownership of its own electrical power generation.

PNG Power, according to Bekker, has always played a key role in the economy and society of Bougainville, as well as the Autonomous Region of Bougainville.

He explained that the people of Bougainville voted for ownership and autonomy over their electrical power generation, transmission, and distribution properties when they voted for independence in 2019.

Meanwhile, ABG Acting Chief Secretary Shadrach Himata said that this relationship is based on mutual understanding and commitment to ensure that the rural majority has access to both non-renewable and renewable energy-based electricity.

Himata also said that the Bougainville government is committed to ensuring that the power and functions of electricity are gradually transferred as expected at the Bougainville Power Company by 2027.



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