The World Bank predicts lower export revenue for Papua New Guinea, fuel prices set to fall, and retailer appeals for calm. The business news you need to kickstart your week.
While the impact of coronavirus is still hard to predict, the World Bank told The National this week that, ‘the lower economic activity in China, following weaker demand and supply side disruptions, has already affected negatively consumer and business confidence and financial markets globally.’
For PNG, ‘an anticipated drop in commodity prices and export volumes will lead to lower export revenue, putting pressure on GDP growth, the FX [foreign exchange] situation and fiscal accounts … leading to a higher fiscal deficit and an additional debt distress,’ the bank said.
The PNG Government has announced a ban on visitors from Italy, Iran, South Korea, Japan and mainland China unless they have served a 14-day quarantine outside the country. It was also announced a 60-day ban on offical overseas travel by public officials and a ban on cruise ships coming to PNG. (PNG Government)
Details of the new covid measures in PNG: pic.twitter.com/rfHMmYZhit
— Natalie Whiting (@Nat_Whiting) March 16, 2020
The impact of the global oil price drop on PNG should be positive in the short-term, with the prospect of lower prices for petrol, diesel and aviation fuel.
However, a sustained drop would especially affect Oil Search (PNG’s only oil producer) and Santos, suggests David Low, Senior Analyst for Woodside Mackenzie. (Business Advantage PNG)
Newcrest Mining has reported disappointing production from the Lihir gold mine in its latest exploration and guidance update.
‘Lihir has been challenged by difficult mining and geothermal conditions, leading to a sub-optimal blend of ore feed to the plant,’ said CEO Sandeep Biswas. ‘Operating improvements planned at Lihir for the remainder of FY20 will be insufficient to address its shortfall in production.’ (Newcrest Mining)
Following a post-referendum Joint Supervisory Board meeting last week between the PNG and Bougainville governments, Prime Minister James Marape confirmed that the remainder of the State’s 36.4 per cent share in Bougainville Copper Ltd would be transferred to Bougainville Mining Ltd, a company controlled by the Autonomous Bougainville Government and landowners. (PNG Loop)
In its end-of-year financial report, Canadian oil and gas services company High Arctic notes, ‘while encouraged by recent PNG Prime Ministerial announcements of a special Ministerial Gas Committee to review the P’nyang Gas Agreement negotiations and “decide what is the best outcome for PNG”, we have changed our outlook and expect continued low well site activity in PNG through 2020.’
Landowner company Bayawaha Limestone Company Ltd is planning to reopen the pioneer limestone project in Bulolo, Morobe Province, after a 20-year hiatus. (The National)
Bmobile is getting ready for a new mobile phone competitor in PNG. (Business Advantage PNG)
The Kumul Submarine Cable Network (KSCN) project is expected to be completed by June, according PNG DataCo Ltd Managing Director, Paul Komboi. (The National)
Internet costs in PNG should go ‘down by 50 to 70 per cent’ over ‘the next nine-to-12 months,’ according to Nirmal Singh, CEO of ISP, Digitec ICT. (The National)
City Pharmacy Ltd‘s Managing Director Mahesh Patel reports an increase in demand for hand sanitisers, tissues and other personal hygiene products.
‘The key point is for people not to panic and over buy,’ he is reported as saying by The Post-Courier.
New Britain Palm Oil Limited (NBPOL) intends to expand its bio-gas potential to all its sites around PNG and the Solomon Islands.
‘We would be happy to work with the governments of PNG and the Solomon Islands and PNG Power Ltd to achieve a sustainable power source for PNG and the Solomon Islands,’ said NBPOL’s Country Manager Robert Nilkare. (The National)
The Coffee Industry Corporation (CIC) is moving towards online processing and documentation of coffee exports using a new online system.
‘This new service will improve coffee export operations and enable us to be on par with international partners,’ said CIC’s Chief Executive, Charles Dambui. (The National)
Credit Corporation posted a ‘group core operating profit’ of K105,019,000 for the year ending December 2019, a 21.7 percent rise on 2018. (Credit Corporation)
Last week, Nambawan Super‘s Chairman, Anthony Smaré, announced the fund’s largest-ever profit (K504 million) during the presentation of the 2019 financial results. PNG’s largest superfund also highlighted K770.54 million contributions received and K464 million in benefits paid to members. (Nambawan Super)
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