The future could look bright for Porgera gold mine, Western Province announces its position on P’nyang, and Papua New Guinea’s Treasurer says non-resource growth for 2020 is projected at 3.3 per cent. The business news you need to kick-start your week.
The Western Provincial Government Team, which is participating in the State Negotiating Team (SNT), returned from Singapore where they presented Western’s position on P’nyang.
In a statement, Western’s Governor Taboi Awi Yoto, and James Donald, Member North Fly Open, said: ‘Unfortunately we see that the Western Provincial Government’s interest has not being captured, not even one single position in the negotiating terms of the state. Neither have we received any feedback from SNT.’
The statement claims that the SNT and ExxonMobil ‘have locked down the final negotiation terms in Singapore’ but Western’s interest haven’t been represented.
Treasurer Ian Ling-Stuckey said last week that ‘in 2020, real non-resource growth is projected as 3.3 per cent’. He expects the growth to be driven by the communications, agriculture, fishing and forestry sectors. ‘This represents a growth rate just above the population growth rate of 3.1 per cent,’ he said. (Post-Courier)
After a careful review, the Independent Consumer and Competition Commission (ICCC) declined to allow Air Niugini to code share with Philippine Airlines on the Port Moresby–Manila route. The ICCC said this route is already competitive and the new code-share agreement could ‘stifle the current level of competition’. ‘The ICCC considers that in the present circumstances, it is better to have Air Niugini and Philippine Airlines to continue to operate independently on the Port Moresby and Manila route,’ said ICCC’s Commissioner and CEO, Paulus Ain.
The construction of a K13.38 million Puma Energy service station begun last week in Port Moresby in a piece of land owned by the University of PNG. The new service station is a public-private partnership between Puma Energy and the university. Completion is due by the end of the year. (The National)
Nambawan Super Ltd (NSL) gave an update of owed contributions for exited and exiting members from the public service by the State and said that each month about K10 million is needed to fund exited public servants’ superannuation contributions. According to Post-Courier, this is the largest workforce in the country and has a yearly exit rate of about 2,300 retirees. NSL said that as of last year, the State has contributed K235 million in outstanding super benefits for exited members, however, ‘the State is still K44 million behind in payments for public servants who have already retired,’ said Paul Sayer, CEO of NSL. ‘The fund continues to liaise with representatives of the State to ensure payments continue to prioritise.’
Bank of PNG’s Governor, Loi Bakani, said that the bank is looking to put government securities on an online trading platform so ‘everyone, including overseas investors, can have access to them in order to buy and sell on PNG’s securities exchange.’ (Business Advantage PNG)
Last week, the Chairman of the Porgera Landowners Association (PLOA) Negotiating Committee, Maso Mangape presented a petition to renew Porgera gold mine mining lease to Mining Minister Johnson Tuke. The lease expired in August 2019 but the Mining Act has allowed Barrick Niugini to continue to operate the mine.
The 25 clan groups that form the Landowners Association want the Government to grant the lease to the current developer, Barrick Niugini Limited (BNL), and not delay it further, because the delay is causing unnecessary problems.’ (NBC News)
Kingston Resources has received encouraging test results from drillings at Misima North, 2.5km north of the Umuna Resource boundary, that show high-grade gold mineralisation.
According to Managing Director, Andrew Corbett, ‘We’re delighted to see such encouraging results from one of our first Misima North holes … and highlighting the prospectivity of the broader Umuna Fault Corridor which hosts both the Umuna and Misima North target areas. The entire 4km strike length of the Umuna Fault Corridor remains largely untested, providing a large, high-quality exploration target for the Company to progressively drill.’ (Kingston Resources)
K92 Mining announced a record production from Kainantu mine for the last quarter of 2019 (Q4), with 23,096 oz of gold, 216,656 lbs of copper and 5,243 oz of silver for a total of 23,646 AuEq (gold equivalent) oz. It exceeded budget by 30 per cent despite interruptions to underground operations resulting from infrastructure updates. The company expects the number of employees to increase to 800 by the end of 2020. (K92 Mining)
Marine services provider Pacific Towing (PacTow) has introduced a hull cleaning service – a first for PNG. The cleaning service, which is necessary to remove marine debris such as barnacles and tubeworm, is key to maintain a vessel’s performance and fuel consumption and is usually carried in Australia or New Zealand. (Post-Courier)
Photograph of the week
Kumul Force 17, comprised of one hundred PNG Defence Force soldiers and personnel from the Engineering Battalion of the 1st Royal Pacific Island Regiment and support staff, left the country last week to assist Australia in bush fire response. Prime Minister Marape farewelled the troops who will be deployed for three months. ‘The Australian government has always been there for us whether it be in good of bad times; therefore, in reciprocal; we show by lending our hands to support them today,’ said Marape.
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