PNG Business News - September 26, 2022

Dirio’s Next Project to Deliver 66 MW to the Ramu Grid

Photo credit: MRDC Dirio Gas and Power’s next project will be to supply 66 megawatts gas fired power station gas for the Ramu Grid. Speaking at the PNG Energy Summit in Port Moresby, Mineral Resource Development Company (MRDC) Chief Operating Officer John Tuaim said Dirio is currently providing a 45 megawatts (MW) gas-fired power station for the Port Moresby grid, and construction on the following project is anticipated to start in early 2023 for the Ramu Grid. The first Dirio project outside of Port Moresby, according to Mr. Tuaim, is already powering the city. They are now looking at the second project, which will be up in Hela Province and deliver 66 MW while also connecting to the Ramu Grid and servicing Southern Highlands Province. “Dirio will be using the same technology and same landowner groups for the first project in the next project up in Hela and we have already signed a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with PNG Power Limited,” he said. “We will also utilise the same strategic staff and local companies to do the next project as well. Once it is done it will provide a cheaper cost of generation power for PNG Power as well.” He stated that Dirio is anticipating a long-term solution for PNG to offer 283MW gas-fueled generation to 12 places around the nation following the project up in Hela, which would bring the advantage of PNG's gas deposits to the entire country. According to Mr. Tuaim, construction on that project is scheduled to begin in 2023 since the National Executive Council (NEC) has already given its approval and because a PPA with PNG Power Limited at 50% of current costs is still waiting.   Reference: Kamus, Maxine. Post-Courier (21 September 2022). “Dirio’s Next Project”.


PNG Business News - September 22, 2022

Day 2 of 4th PNG Energy Summit highlights local content, SME development for future generation

Picture from left to right: Dr. Genevieve Nelson, Mr. Luke Liria, Mr. Peter Koim, Mr. Francis Kunuma and Mr. Kori Chan  One of the highlights of the second day of the PNG Energy Summit discussions on the 21st of September was how the energy sector could contribute toward local content and the development of local small to medium enterprises for the future. Present for the panel of discussions were Mr. Kori Chan, Managing Director of Total Waste Management Group (TWM); Mr. Francis Kunuma, Cofounder of Nares Engineering Ltd.; Mr. Luke Liria, Corporate Affairs Executive General Manager, Kumul Petroleum Holdings Limited; Mr. Peter Koim, Director PNG Gas Projects Coordination Office; and the moderator, Dr. Genevieve Nelson, Chief Executive Officer of Kokoda Track Foundation. Both Nares Engineering and Total Waste Management Group being 100-percent locally owned companies participating in the LNG project, elaborated more on the services they provided. TWM is currently the leading total waste management and environmental service provider in PNG, while Nares Engineering provides non-destructive testing (NDT) that includes x-ray, ultrasonic, magnetic particle, dye penetrant, and macro testing methods, as well as statutory inspection services. Mr. Chan and Mr. Kunuma, in response to a question by Dr. Nelson on the challenges they faced as local companies, asked the government to explore investing in the future of a skilled trained workforce, as to correlate to international standards and meet the demand in the energy sector in terms of skills and development. Mr. Liria spoke on the current achievement of Kumul Petroleum’s social investment projects in the country. These include the training of skilled technicians through its Kumul Petroleum Academy, in which ExxonMobil PNG is a major sponsor for on-the-job employment and skills. The other proposed project is the steel fabrication facility and construction training academy, which will employ more Papua New Guineans. Another major project includes support for health and sports; so far K65 million has been spent on cancer facilities in Mendi, Angau, and Port Moresby General Hospital. Closing off the panel discussions, Mr. Koim spoke of the importance of the government providing an avenue for landowners to participate meaningfully in the energy sector. As the resources are currently nonrenewable, both the landowners from the gas project areas and different stakeholders must participate in its development, he said.


PNG Business News - September 21, 2022

4th Papua New Guinea Energy Summit and Exhibition paints a promising future

The fourth Papua New Guinea Energy Summit and Exhibition commenced on the 20th of September 2022 at the Hilton Hotel and will end on the 22nd of September. The theme of the summit is "A New Dawn for PNG's Energy Sector Development." The host sponsor for the Summit is Kumul Petroleum Holdings Limited, whose Managing Director Wapu Sonk gave the opening remarks. Mr. Sonk stated that PNG is blessed with both renewable and non-renewable resources and that the proper development of these will underpin national development for many years to come. Representing the government, Minister for Petroleum and Energy Hon.Kerenga Kua, in his keynote address, stated that PNG is an exporter of liquefied natural gas. This, in the long run, will prepare the country for the future to be viable when there will be customers for PNG's green energy export. Mr. Kua also elaborated that getting electricity to remote areas is not easy given the topography of the country, and PNG's electrification reach is poor compared to other countries. Major players in the energy industry, including the National Energy Authority (the regulatory body of the state), gave their presentations as well to help potential investors in the country work cohesively with different stakeholders, in line with the government's policy and existing national content plan. Existing energy developers and partners such as ExxonMobil PNG, Santos, MRDC, Twinza Oil, High Arctic Energy, and Chiyoda also gave detailed presentations. One of the key areas highlighted by all of them is that they are looking forward to advancing in community initiative projects, including sports, education, health, carbon emissions projects, and utilizing technology that will enhance green energy in the future. Besides the energy developers, Vodafone PNG was present as well for a presentation on the use of telecommunication as a major player in the energy industry in terms of technology while working remotely in the terrains of Papua New Guinea. A total of 30 exhibitors were enlisted for the exhibition, including: Aspen Medical AG Energy Limited American Chamber of Commerce ANZ Bank Limited- PNG Atlas Steel PNG ExxonMobil PNG Limited High Arctic Energy Services PNG Limited JX Nipping Oil and Gas Exploration Corp- Japan Kina Bank Kumul Petroleum Monier Limited MRDC MTIS Group (Asia Pacific) MVIL NACAP PNG Limited National Energy Authority Nambawan Super Pacific International Hospital Pacific MMI Insurance Limited PNG Business News PNG Internal Revenue Commission RTI International- PNG Electrification Partnership Santos Limited Telikom Thai Benkan Company Limited Total E&P PNG Limited Touchstone NDT Limited Twinza Oil Vodafone Papua New Guinea Westpac


PNG Business News - September 01, 2022

PM Marape wants first green energy project off the ground in 2023

The clean green energy projects initiative being championed by Papua New Guinea Prime Minister James Marape moves one step closer to take-off as he met the second time this month with Fortescue Future Industries South-East Asia President Allard M. Nooy in Port Moresby today (August 29 2022). The Prime Minister used this opportunity to connect the company directly to the Government’s working team to get the project off the ground, which he wants to see happen within 2022 and 2023. The meeting follows from the first PM Marape and Mr Nooy held in Singapore earlier this month during the PM Marape’s short visit to the country some days after his election. At the meeting this morning, Prime Minister Marape reassured Mr Nooy that he stood ready to speak at the high-level arena, while directing the State Negotiating Team to work with the company in processing the mechanisms needed to get the first project off the ground. The Prime Minister also committed the relevant agencies of the State to assist FFI progress this work immediately. PM Marape then came in strong with his reassurance that at the high-level, he would speak with the founder and owner of the company Dr. Andrew Forrest and proceed in making connections to markets in countries that have existing bi-lateral relations with Papua New Guinea. He highlighted Papua New Guinea’s strategic location in relation to the economies of both ASEAN (Association of South East Asian Nations) and APEC (Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation) nations, many of whom already have existing bi-lateral ties with PNG. He said with very high populations in these countries and PNG having all the right conditions to produce energy and food, the country was appropriately placed to contribute to both energy and food security in the region. PM Marape said: “At the high-level, if you want someone to market these things for you, our Government can market for you using the bi-lateral connections. We have strong relationship with China since 1975; with US at the bi-lateral level, with South Korea, India, Indonesia, Malaysia. These are big economies. “We are rightly placed to advocate for green energy. That is our competitive advantage. African nations do not have this; they are too far but we are right here. And we are here to support you. “We are ready to assemble a team. So by 2023, we not in concept anymore but get some project going.” PM Marape once more reassured the company on the opportunities available in Purari River, Gulf Province and the geothermal springs of West New Britain Province where the company has already established working sites based under two heads agreement signed between the State and FFI last year. The meeting, held at the Prime Minister’s office at Sir Manasupe House, was attended by Minister for Petroleum and Energy Hon. Kerenga Kua; Governor for West New Britain, Hon. Sasindran Muthuvel; Member for Rabaul, Hon. Graham Pinau Rumet; and Head of the State Negotiating Team Dairi Vele. President Nooy was accompanied by FFI PNG representative, Andy Hetra.   Article courtesy of PM James Marape News Page


PNG Business News - July 11, 2022

Installation of solar power to support rural communities in Papua New Guinea

EU-STREIT PNG preparing to install micro grid solar panels in selected public facilities to support cocoa, vanilla and fisheries entrepreneurs as well as livelihoods of rural communities. To create an enabling environment for cocoa, vanilla and fisheries entrepreneurs and to generate real possibility for economic growth that will enhance the livelihoods of rural communities, the UNDP under the EU-Funded Joint UN STREIT PNG Programme, is closing in on preparatory works with stakeholders to install solar generated clean and renewable electrical energy in the Sepik region of Papua New Guinea. In a one-day workshop organised by the Programme in Wewak, East Sepik Province, on Thursday 23 June, participating stakeholders from Division of Education, Sepik Seventh-day Adventist (SDA) Mission, Division of Health and Catholic Health Service came together to discuss and gauge feedback from beneficiaries on the installation of micro grid solar systems in six identified facilities. The selected recipients in East Sepik Province are Taul Community Health Post in Turubu area of Wewak District, Nagum Adventist Secondary in Yangoru-Saussia District and the Catholic Health Service-run Dagua Community Health Centre along west coast highway in Wewak District. The beneficiaries in Sandaun Province are all located in Vanimo-Green District namely Don Bosco Technical School, Vanimo Secondary and Baro Community Health Post. These education and health facilities are located in areas with limited or no access to grid-connected electricity. Opening the workshop was Head of FAO Country Office in Papua New Guinea Mr Bir Mandal who was visiting Wewak to support the programme to expedite the programme implementation and enhancing partnerships with East Sepik Provincial Government. Mr Mandal draw attention to the global scenario on energy access and what this means for the Greater Sepik Region and PNG. “A third of the 2.6 billion people in the world still do not have access to safe, clean fuels and technologies for cooking or heating their homes, at significant health, social and environmental costs. In PNG, only 15% of the total population of about 8 million have access to grid connected electricity.” He added: “For change to occur, we need to reset our energy systems and put people into the centre – ensuring that these systems are cleaner, more secure, more resilient, and totally inclusive.” “Under the Programme, we’re working together with relevant Government of PNG (GoPNG) agencies at the national level and our target provinces to ensure communities in the agri-value chain get connected to electricity via renewable energy sources. This initiative will contribute to the GoPNG’s energy access target as outlined in the Medium-Term Development Plan III and various development plans, policy frameworks and regulatory instruments,” said Mr Mandal. Despite the disruption in the global supply chain by the Pandemic which has put a strain on the progress of this effort, UNDP’s Project Manager, Ms Karen Anawe, said, “I’m pleased to announce that preparatory works are now underway to ensure we assist the government to close the energy access gap by promoting clean energy and a transition towards a low carbon economy in our focus areas.” Ms Anawe said the meeting also discussed sustainability and ownership arrangements of these micro grid solar systems. For the recipients, unreliable electricity supply has been an ongoing dilemma for years, hence the support will give confidence as well as strengthening their operations to service better the rural people. “Nagum Secondary is a recipient of this support and I like to say thank you to the European Union as financiers of this impact project, not only for the school, but for the community at large. We’re glad that the solar project in the future will gather for students from the Sepik provinces, and also from Madang and Morobe,” said Mr Jeffrey Saigomi, Secretary for Sepik SDA Mission. For Dagua Community Health Centre, serving sick patients after hours or in the night has been an concern for some years because of no proper lighting. “This is a big help to us, especially for the people living along west coast including Dagua LLG. The solar power will provide sufficient lights for sick patients in our wards. It will also help with some emergencies we conduct after hours and in the night like attending to deliveries and injuries from road accidents mainly,” said Mr Ignatius Burr, Health Extension Officer. The rural health facility services some 100,000 plus rural population of Dagua LLG including those from Boikin LLG. Despite being handicapped in its operations, the facility is known for being the first to attend to some very serious road accident injuries along the west coast highway before referrals are made to Boram General Hospital in Wewak Town. A feasibility assessment for renewable energy power was conducted in early 2021 for the region, and six facilities were identified for solar energy installation. The UNDP under the EU-STREIT PNG Programme supports development and improvement of renewable energy to create an enabling environment that will embrace development of the three targeted value chains which thousands of rural communities in the Sepik Region depend on to sustain their livelihoods. The EU-STREIT PNG, as a UN Joint Programme (FAO as leading agency, and ILO, ITU, UNCDF and UNDP as partners), is the largest grant-funded Programme of the European Union in the country and the Pacific region. Being implemented in close cooperation with the National and provincial government institutions, research entities, civil society organizations, and private sector enterprises, the Programme aims to help improve the lives of the people from East Sepik and Sandaun provinces, by focusing on increasing sustainable and inclusive economic development of rural areas through improved economic returns and opportunities from cocoa, vanilla and fishery value chains while strengthening and improving the efficiency of value chain enablers, including the business environment, and supporting sustainable, climate-proof transport and energy infrastructure development.


PNG Business News - June 20, 2022

ADB, Australia, PNG Partner to Boost Access to Clean, Reliable, and Affordable Power

Photo credit: ADB The Asian Development Bank (ADB) today announced a $305 million project which will support the strengthening and expansion of electricity in Papua New Guinea (PNG). The Power Sector Development Project is supported by loans and grants from ADB and the governments of Australia and PNG and will target five subprojects within the main power grids of the country’s power utility, PNG Power Limited (PPL). ADB provided two loans amounting to $208.6 million, the Government of Australia contributed a $59.5 million loan and a $12.8 million grant, and the Government of PNG with PPL will yield $24.1 million. “PNG has one of the lowest rates of electricity access in the Pacific, with only 13% of households having access,” said Director of ADB Pacific Department’s Energy Division Mukhtor Khamudkhanov. “The project will contribute to the government’s objective of connecting 70% of its population to electricity by 2030 and will help advance reforms in the power sector.” The project will expand and upgrade transmission lines and substations in Gazelle, Ramu, and Port Moresby; build new low- and medium-voltage power distribution lines in Gazelle, Ramu, and Port Moresby, and mini grids in West New Britain; and strengthen the capacity of PPL through the introduction of procurement and implementation, utility operation, and financial management reforms. The limited electricity access in PNG stifles economic growth and exacerbates poverty and inequality in both urban and rural areas. COVID-19 has also impacted the local economy, and quality infrastructure is a central component of the government’s post-pandemic economic recovery strategy. The stable power grids proposed under the project will help maintain urban health facilities’ basic operations and are critical to reducing COVID-19 risks. ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members—49 from the region.   Article courtesy of ADB


PNG Business News - June 13, 2022

Solar Association: Focus On Green Energy

According to the Solar Energy Association of PNG, foreign investments in the energy industry are now focusing on green energy, but the country's institutional frameworks are insufficient to take advantage of the prospects. President Christian Lohberger said: “PNG was one of the first countries to sign the Paris Agreement on climate change and under our national commitments, we have set a target of the electricity sector being 78 per cent renewable by 2030. “Currently, we are less than 50 per cent renewable and have a growing LNG industry. “So we need to develop a pipeline of hydro, solar and eventually wind projects. “Happily, these are also cheap and (in the case of solar) very fast to build.” According to Lohberger, the LNG business presently dominates the PNG energy sector, although LNG is extremely expensive to acquire (or not export) owing to the Ukraine conflict. “LNG is also very polluting with huge methane and carbon dioxide emissions that destroy our environment,” he said. “It is difficult to see LNG competing with solar and other renewables from a price perspective, particularly if a carbon price is adopted. “Our major trading partners are all adopting carbon prices and this will pressure us to clean up emissions. “Europe and China already have active carbon prices with the US having a tax credit that effectively works the same way as a carbon price. “Australia once had a very successful carbon price but it was removed for political reasons. “Looking forward a few years, the most likely scenario is a grid that is almost entirely powered by solar and wind with hydro for backup on rainy and windless days. “LNG might be useful for extreme situations a few times a year when demand cannot be met.”   Reference: Luma, Dale. The National (8 June 2022). “Association: Focus on green energy”


PNG Business News - May 22, 2022

PNG Electrification Global Information System Launched

The PNG Electrification Global Information System has been created by the United States Agency for International Development. Off-grid energy providers can use the Electrification Global Information System (GIS) platform to find prospective mini-grid locations and regions for selling stand-alone solar goods. Sean Callahan, USAID's Deputy Mission Director for the Pacific Islands and Mongolia, formally inaugurated the platform during his visit to Papua New Guinea. According to him, the platform would initially be available to several hundred customers in the electricity industry. “USAID is pleased to be a partner with stakeholders to bring electricity to rural Papua New Guinea. This innovative, data-based approach will provide our off-grid partners with the live, up-to-date information they need to further bring electrification to rural communities,” said Deputy Mission Director Callahan. He explained that the PNG Electrification GIS platform is an interactive mapping tool that allows stakeholders working on electrification in PNG to view hundreds of indicators linked to local populations and communities. “The platform was developed by the Papua New Guinea Electrification Partnership (USAID-PEP). “The USAID-PEP Activity is a five-year, US$57 million project partnership with the PNG government to advance the country’s journey to self-reliance by contributing to the goal of connecting 70 per cent of PNG’s population to electricity by 2030,” he said. To achieve this aim, USAID-PEP supports PNG Power Limited, develops viable off-grid electrification models, improves PNG's energy regulator, and catalyses private sector investment, according to him.   Reference: Post-Courier (20 May 2022). “Online Platform To Support Electricity In PNG By 2030”.


PNG Business News - April 04, 2022

Power Project Launched

Through the rural electrification on grid initiative, more over 56,000 people in Rigo, particularly in Hula communities in the Central Province, now have access to power. The project was successfully completed thanks to the New Zealand Government and PNG Power Limited. The overall cost of this project, according to Rigo MP Lekwa Gure, is $9 million NZ dollars (K20 million), and it has now been finished and commissioned. According to him, if they had to access this rural electrification project based on population, the K20 million investment would reach more than 50,000 individuals, or 23% of the district's population. “I understand from PPL that currently we only have 60 per cent of the country that have access to electricity,” he said. “What that means is we have to roll out rural electrification program by seven percent per annum in the next eight years in order to reach the final seven percent by the year 2030. “With the completion of this Hula electrification project, Rigo Coast LLG is now complete except for Golobu and three villages of Keapara, Anukuni and Karawa. The project comes in three phases which are now completed.” The commissioning, according to New Zealand High Commissioner Philip Taula, is a significant step forward for the local populations, as well as Papua New Guinea and New Zealand. Mr Taula stated that they are eager to collaborate closely in order to enhance prosperity, stability, transparency, and resilience in this country and around the Pacific. “Key focus for New Zealand is to work with the Government of PNG and other partnering nations like Australia, United States of America and Japan in realigning to achieve the goal of delivering electrification to all Papua New Guineans by the year 2030,” he added. The project, according to PPL, involves a line extension and residential connection to the main grid.   Reference: Tom, Patrick. Post-Courier (1 April 2022). “K20m Power Project Launched”.


PNG Business News - March 07, 2022

PM Marape invites creation of power companies

As the new National Energy Authority (NEA) develops from strength to strength within a year of its inception, structural changes to boost energy output and tap into Papua New Guinea's alternative power-generation sources continue. Hon. Saki Soloma gave the country an update on the NEA's work since its two enabling legislation, the National Energy Act 2021 and the Electricity Industry Amendment Act 2021, were approved in April of last year, establishing it. The NEA is one of Prime Minister Hon. David Cameron's constituents. James Marape's aims to assist industrialize the PNG economy remain at the top of the agenda, along with the Connect PNG Program in civil infrastructure. The NEA was created as a result of his government uniting behind the passage of the NEA. The Prime Minister joined members of Parliament who came out in support of NEA and Minister Soloma's efforts to get the statutory body up and running. According to him, NEA takes over as the electricity regulator, leaving PNG Power Ltd with little choice but to operate as a power supply firm under a license. This instantly opens the way for new power-supply businesses to operate in PNG, which the Prime Minister rapidly took advantage of today in Parliament to demand. Bougainville, Manus, New Ireland, Oro, and a number of other locations not linked to the PNG power grid will be able to benefit from this new scenario, with the Prime Minister urging provincial governments to begin looking into developing it. PNG, according to the Prime Minister, has a plethora of alternative energy sources, including solar, hydro, wind, and geothermal energy, which the NEA plans to develop. Even though it is still in its early stages, NEA has already formed collaborations with Australian investor Fortescue Future Industries in the geothermal and hydropower sectors, with the goals of local supply as well as international export and commerce. The idea behind the current power programs involving the "four-nation" aid partners, according to the Prime Minister, is to get each of these financiers to support the development of supply lines into the country's most populous areas, similar to Japan's current support for the Yonki-Lae 132kva grid. Several more will be discovered, including the Yonki-Madang-Wewak supply chain. “Vision 2050 clearly states that by 2030, 70 per cent of our citizens must have access to electricity. So it is consistent with a national focus that by 2050, and the three MTDs that we have operated thus far, that the 70 per cent target is achieved – if not in 2030, at the very earliest,” said PM Marape.   Reference: PM James Marape News Page (1 March 2022). “PM Marape invites creation of power companies”. 


PNG Business News - March 07, 2022

Japan Awards K15.6M Grant to Hydropower Project

For development on the Rouna 3 hydropower project in Central, the Japanese government has awarded a K15.6 million grant. Soroi Eoe, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, thanked Japanese Ambassador Nobuyuki Watanabe for the money in Port Moresby. The K15.6 million donation, according to Ambassador Watanabe, was authorized by the Japanese government in a recent cabinet meeting and will be used to purchase electrical equipment to improve power generation, notably at the Rouna 3 hydropower project. The award, according to Eoe, would help PNG Vision 2050 achieve its goal of reducing carbon emissions by 90% and generating 100% of electricity from renewable energy sources by 2050. It will also assist PNG Power in providing low-cost generation to link families as part of the PNG Electrification Partnership and PNG Development Strategic Plan, which aims to connect 70% of households by 2030. Despite the economic downturn and income contraction caused by the Coronavirus (Covid-19), Watanabe stated that Japan will continue to help PNG. In 2021, Japan offered K1 billion in direct budget support, K34 million in grant assistance for rural electricity, K13 million in grant assistance for construction equipment to support infrastructure development in West Sepik, Manus, Milne Bay, and Enga, and now the grants for Rouna 3 and Tokua Airport. Watanabe was reassured by Eoe's assurance that the grant funds would be used properly and for their intended purposes.   Reference: The National (1 March 2022). “Japan govt gives K15.6mil for work on hydropower station”.


PNG Business News - February 28, 2022

PM Marape thanks Warangoi landowners

Landowners in Warangoi, Pomio, East New Britain, have been informed that they would be paid K5 million for the use of their land and water for the Warangoi Hydro Power Project by James Marape. In Parliament, he provided this guarantee to Pomio MP, Hon. Elias Kapavore, who had inquired about the payment schedule. PM Marape promised landowners that they would be compensated the K5 million they requested for the usage of their land and water when he opened the K83 million 10 Megawatt Warangoi PNG Power Ltd (PPL) Hydro Power Project Major Rehabilitation Project in November. He praised landowners in Parliament today for enabling East New Britain to utilize their land and water for 30 years to produce power. PM Marape stated that he had discussed the matter further with the Minister of State-Owned Enterprises, Hon. It was in the KCH Work Plan for 2022, and it was written by William Duma and Kumul Consolidated Holdings (KCH). “That K5 million commitment is part of that work plan,” he said. “We could not find the money last year as it was not factored into the work plan, but based on that commitment, we came back and I am happy to announce that the K5 million is captured in this year’s work plan. “Within this month, or next month, the minister responsible (Duma), the KCH team and PNG Power will inform your (Pomio) team and they will do an official handover of that K5 million.” PM Marape commended the Warangoi landowners for their patience for more than 30 years. “They’ve shown goodwill to allow Warangoi Hydro to be functional and it is only fair that we honour them ASAP,” he said.   Reference: PM James Marape News Page (23 February 2022). “PM Marape thanks Warangoi landowners”.


PNG Business News - December 08, 2021

PNG has potential to become ‘huge’ producer of green products

Prime Minister James Marape has been told that Papua New Guinea has "the potential to become a large supplier of green products for the globe," with 19 gigawatts of electricity already estimated from the Purari, Kikori, and Strickland hydro potentials, as well as the West New Britain geothermal projects. Julie Suttleworth, the CEO of green energy producer Fortescue Future Industries, told the Prime Minister this while on her route to tour project sites in Gulf and West New Britain in her briefing to the PM. She also rated West New Britain's geothermal locations as "one of the top three regions in the world" for Fortescue projects. The CEO was replying to the Prime Minister's question on whether PNG's green energy potential will fulfill the projections made by FFI owner and environmentalist Dr Andrew Forrest, who claimed that PNG's renewable energy sources could generate up to 25 gigawatts of power. Suttleworth said: “We have currently indicated that there were about 15 gigawatts of hydropower that is in the Master Development Agreement that we could access. So we are starting at 15 gigawatts of hydropower; there is approximately 4.3 gigawatts of geothermal also that we have identified at this stage. “This is early days; there may be more. So that totals to about 19 gigawatts that our study team has already identified. Not quite 25 gigawatts yet, but we hope that over time, we will get to that number. But around now, we know that there is 19 gigawatts of potential. “If all these projects of about 19 gigawatts of power are developed, they can make over 10 million tonnes per year of green hydrogen, or about 13 million tonnes of green ammonia, or a combination of both, because ammonia is heavier than hydrogen. “So there is the potential to be a huge producer of green products for the world. “It is a very important part of our portfolio. We have made a commitment globally to make 15 million tonnes of green hydrogen per year, much of that will come from Australia, but over 2 million tonnes of this will come from PNG which is a huge percentage of our target. “So the overall vision is to make over 2 million tonnes of green hydrogen from PNG, develop over 19 gigawatts of geothermal and hydropower across the various projects, as well as decarbonise PNG, and have excess for export which is a huge amount to export because PNG won’t need all.  “We will be doing the studies on the hydropower system to optimise the design of the hydropower dams phase process. So the first Purari sites will be 3 gigawatts. And then there will be stage by stage development – upper Purari, Strickland and others to get to the total of 15 gigawatts. So that does not all happen at once. Start off lower Purari and then others up to 15 gigawatts. “And at the same time, we need to do more investigative work on the geothermal potential. Geothermal exploration is very expensive. So you need to do a lot of fieldwork first to determine where is the drill bit is going to go down to determine the geothermal potential. This is not done in many places around the world because it is so expensive. Tens of millions of dollars per one hole. It is very expensive drilling. We think there are at least 4 gigawatts of geothermal potential that needs to be explored and determined to the best way to develop. “So part of studies is working out the best way to develop the hydropower resource and the geothermal resource. Once we got that renewable power, we need to put the transmission lines to the industrial hub. So of course, in the hydropower, you are linking Strickland, Upper Purari, Lower Purari altogether, so then take the transmission line to the coast where there is a port location. “We are optimising, right now, the best location for the port. We got two or three options. “And then we need to optimise the hydrogen production facility. How many electrolysis do we need to make the best use of power, and that electrolyser will take the renewable power, electrolysis of water – so we need to determine where we getting the water from. Is it going to be seawater, or from the river. And then we have to clean that water up to use for electrolysis. “Electrolysis will make hydrogen with zero emissions. That hydrogen can be used or exported or made into ammonia. This first project that we do, we’ll probably make ammonia because it is easy to transport ammonia.” Because of the lack of information and comprehension of how the process operated, Prime Minister Marape asked Suttleworth to describe the method of producing green hydrogen and green ammonia. These projects are comparable in size to big LNG projects in terms of exploration, building, operation, and revenue creation for the country, and they have received the government's full backing to move forward.   Reference: PM James Marape News Page (5 December 2021). “PNG has potential to become ‘huge’ producer of green products”. 


PNG Business News - November 24, 2021

PM Marape says project agreements signed are part of continuing due process

Photo credit: PNG PM Media - Papua New Guinea's State Enterprises Minister, Sasindran Muthuvel (left), Prime Minister James Marape (centre) and the chairman of Fortescue Metals Group of Australia, Andrew Forrest, sign an agreement, Port Moresby, 1st September 2020. PRIME Minister Hon. James Marape has once more defended the signing of the agreements with green energy developer Fortescue Future Industries (FFI), clarifying that the agreements are part of the process of meeting due diligence as the projects progressed from stage to stage. While saying this, the Prime Minister cautioned Members of Parliament to be sensitive to potential investors in their “attack” on them on the Floor of Parliament, as, he said growing the country’s economy came on the back of foreign investment and this should be treated with a bipartisan approach by both sides of the House. The Prime Minister was speaking today in Parliament while answering questions raised by the Opposition Leader Belden Namah, who inferred the FFI hydro and geothermal projects with Dr. Andrew Forrest were “rushed”, asking if these have gone through due process, while questioning the credentials of this leading Australian investor. PM Marape said Dr. Forrest was a very successful businessman, a global figure mining and now in the green energy space, likening him to Elon Musk – both of whom, the PM said, were frontier-breaking, research-based innovators.   He said of Namah’s assertions: “Just because we are pitching out with the investor does not mean that we have already agreed (in full). Due diligence has to take its course; the process of government will have to take its course. “I want to assure the Opposition leader that there will not be a deal that we will rush into at the expense of our country’s security, sovereignty and economic gain. Our country is littered with too many experiences of things going wrong because of processes not being followed. “I want to give this assurance – we will not rush into this because we have just signed an agreement. MOUs and MOAs are all part of the due process that will eventually be cleared by all our state entities, including the state lawyers to get the final product for business that is mutually beneficial to the investors and our country. “I make one reference to Porgera as a case in point. When we sat to make a commercial agreement with Barrick, we out-laid to them our principles; and they subscribed to our principles. We did not compromise legacy issues. We would ensure that we have the greater project benefits to our country. And so the commercial negotiations were agreed upon; and then we went into the due processes – for instance the framework agreement signed, then the commencement agreement signed, and then subsidiary to the commencement agreement, there will be joint venture company agreement set up. “So at every stage of the process, all instrumentalities of government are put in place…and there are opportunities for review,” said the Prime Minister. To Namah’s question on why the signing took place in Glasgow, the Prime Minister said this happened as a part of the United Nations climate summit (COP26) events because of the nature of the summit and global consciousness to move into environmentally friendly energy sources as advocated for through the summit. PM Marape said Dr. Forrest’s intention to invest in PNG was based on his proposal, part of which was the aim to harvest some 25 gigawatts of power by turning these into green energy for both internal consumption and export. “When you have proposal on foot to harvest 25 gigawatts of power from our hydro and geothermal potentials – that’s about five or six PNGLNGs in one basket; it is a concept worth looking at.” The Prime Minister said his Government was not time-bound by elections and years in office so that because of the elections, it cannot take on these sorts of projects and progress them. “When we took government, we said we will deliver as many projects as possible to ensure direct foreign investments into the country.” He said for the FFI agreement was not only for Purari but for the whole Purari River basin and systems just as it was for geothermal potential covering selected sites in West New Britain.   Article courtesy of PM James Marape News Page


PNG Business News - November 23, 2021

PM Marape opens K83 million electricity project in East New Britain

Photo credit: PM Marape News Page - Warangoi project Prime Minister Hon. James Marape recently opened the K83 million 10 Megawatt Warangoi PNG Power Ltd (PPL) Hydro Power Project Major Rehabilitation Project in rural Pomio, East New Britain, with an assurance to landowners that they would be paid the K5 million they wanted for use of their land and water. He was accompanied by East New Britain Governor Hon. Nakikus Konga, Pomio MP Hon. Elias Kapavore, Health Minister and Gazelle MP Hon. Jelta Wong, Agriculture and Livestock Minister Hon. John Simon, Correctional Services Minister Hon. Win Daki, Kumul Consolidated Holdings Ltd Chairman Moses Maladina and Acting Managing-Director Prof. David Kavanamur, and PPL Acting Chief Executive Officer Obed Batia. Rehabilitation of the project was made possible through the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the GoPNG co-funded Town Electrification Investment Programme, with the contractors being Dongfang Electric Corp and AG Investments JV. It will boost up the low production of Warongoi hydropower facility, which was originally commissioned in 1983, but has been supplying below its rated capacity of 10MW for the last 10 years into the Gazelle Grid. PM Marape thanked local landowners for allowing electricity to flow to East New Britain for the last 39 years without demanding compensation. “Power generation from here has produced so many economic benefits for East New Britain,” he said. “To the people of Sinivit, to the people of Baining, your Government will not let you down (in the K5 million they asked for).” PM Marape appealed to the landowners to organise themselves – like their counterparts at Yonki in Eastern Highlands and Rouna in Central – to benefit from the funds instead of just a few people benefitting. He asked them to do this in preparation for the next phase of the project further up the Warangoi River. PM Marape said this was part of the Pangu Pati’s flagship policy of creating “economic independence” for the people of PNG PM Marape described East New Britain as “a very important part of our country” in the non-extractive industries such as agriculture, tourism, fisheries and sustainable forestry. “In that context, we come to East New Britain not by accident, but by choice, because this is a very good foundation province  to anchor our focus on rural-based industries like agriculture and downstream processing,” he said. “All of this will depend on reliable power, reliable infrastructure and reliable Internet.”   Article courtesy of PM Marape News Page 

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