Pokpok Island near Kieta. Tourism at community level has great potential for small business and, in the long term, to promote Bougainville as a peaceful and beautiful Pacific destination
KIETA - We can talk about and hold up and dangle tourism as a potential driver and earner of Bougainville’s internal revenue - talking is easy.
We are creatures of habit and instinct and we keep talking and talking if it sounds good without realising things are much more involved and will take a lot more focused human effort than we think.
Continue reading "Let’s put our feet where our mouth is" »
| ZDNet | Edited extracts
SYDNEY - Australia is funding the potential purchase of a Pacific telco for only one reason, to ensure China Mobile doesn't get to it first.
It now appears Australia wants a crack at showing the world how to keep companies out of Chinese ownership.
Continue reading "Oz sweats to keep Pacific telcos from China" »
Influential Bougainville politician, Theonila Matbob - Prominent in advocating that Rio Tinto should accept responsibility for cleaning up Panguna's devastating legacy
NOOSA – After several months of discussions Rio Tinto and 156 Bougainville community members, represented by the Human Rights Law Centre, last week reached an agreement to assess legacy impacts of the former Panguna copper and gold mine on Bougainville.
The mine was operated by Bougainville Copper Ltd (BCL), then majority owned by Rio Tinto, from 1972 until 1989 when operations were suspended following guerrilla against the mine and a subsequent civil war.
Continue reading "Rio ready to deal with unfinished business" »
Tailings waste flowing into Konawiru-Jaba River delta on the Bougainville west coast
| SBS News
BRISBANE - Multinational mining giant Rio Tinto has agreed to fund an independent assessment of the human rights and environmental impacts of its former Panguna copper and gold mine in Papua New Guinea’s autonomous region of Bougainville.
Rio Tinto abandoned the mine in 1989 during a brutal civil conflict on Bougainville and now no longer holds a stake after controversially divesting its shareholding to the PNG and Bougainville governments in 2016, rejecting corporate responsibility for environmental damage.
Continue reading "Rio agrees to review of Panguna impacts" »
Menya River (Brian Chapaitis)
PORT MORESBY - This article breaks down some of the myths used to justify the privatisation of customary land.
It makes clear that efforts to privatise land are not about development but about profits for corporations, financial institutions and already wealthy people.
Continue reading "Don't privatise our customary land" »
Cartoonist Mark David depicts treasurer Frydenberg and prime minister Morrison's flawed efforts in managing the pandemic and the economy
ADELAIDE – Keith Jackson has rightly written (‘Lethargic Australia drops ball on Covid’) that the Morrison government has failed dismally to do its job in relation to both quarantine and vaccination relating to Australia’s Covid pandemic.
The direct result of this failure is that the State premiers have had to do all the heavy lifting to contain the virus.
Continue reading "Neo-liberal dogma seen in Oz Covid failures" »
Loi Bakani - "The Bank of PNG disassociates itself from the statement made by FASU”
NOOSA – Transparency International PNG (TIPNG) has strongly supported PNG’s financial regulator after Central Bank governor dissociated his bank from action it had taken to investigate possible money laundering.
TIPNG chair Peter Aitsi called on the government and the private sector to respect the independence of the Financial Analysis and Supervision Unit (FASU).
Continue reading "Transparency defends besieged regulator" »
Then Treasurer Don Polye refused to approve the deal and was sacked by prime minister Peter O’Neill. Polye is one of the few people to emerge with honour from the scandal
| Australian Financial Review | Extracts
SYDNEY - For the past four months, a royal commission into an eight-year-old deal most Australians have never heard of, in a country that rarely rates a mention, has been quietly chipping away.
Forced online by Covid-19, the inquiry into a $1.3 billion (K3.4 billion) loan extended by the Sydney office of UBS to the government of Papua New Guinea has heard from prime ministers, chief executives, a cabinet minister and top bureaucrats.
Continue reading "UBS's K210 million ‘excess’ on loan: expert" »
Bank South Pacific in Port Moresby
| Investor Daily
SYDNEY - A Papua New Guinea-based banking group listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) has caught the ire of the regulator for alleged serious breaches of Australia’s anti-money laundering rules.
BSP Financial Group (BFL), which listed on the ASX earlier this year, is the largest bank in PNG with branches in six South Pacific nations.
Continue reading "Big bank in money laundering claims" »
Sir Julius Chan, EITI secretariat head Lucas Alkan and New Ireland provincial administrator Lamiller Pawut
| PNG Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative
KAVIENG - New Ireland governor Sir Julius Chan says a proposed law to promote transparency and accountability in mining and petroleum will keep everyone honest in the long run.
Chan made this remark when he opened the Extractive Industries Transparency Commission Bill consultation for the New Guinea Island Region.
Continue reading "Law to keep extractive industries in check" »
Malcolm Kela Smith (PNGi). "Mal's response was furious and littered with profanities. Needless to say, my relationship with him ended acrimoniously"
| Ex Kiap Website | Edited
BARDON, QLD - The people who live along the Sepik River, who depend upon it for their livelihoods, are facing the fight of a lifetime.
The Chinese-owned Guangdong Rising through its subsidiary, PanAust, is seeking approval from the Papua New Guinea government to establish the Frieda River copper and gold mine.
Continue reading "The day I gave the bad news to Kela Smith" »
The unfinished K200 million Boroko casino. Arguments continue on a project that went bust in 2011 (TIPNG)
PORT MORESBY - National Gaming Control Board (NGCB) chairman Clemence Kanau says the regulator never had aspirations to run Port Moresby’s casino.
Kanau also dismissed claims by failed Boroko Casino developer, South Korean company CMSS PNG, that it had met all the requirements to establish the casino.
Continue reading "Regulator: ‘We didn’t want to run casino’" »
Japanese prime minister Yoshihide Suga speaking during the online 9th Pacific Alliance Leaders Meeting (PALM)
| Sunday Bulletin
PORT MORESBY – Papua New Guinea’s prime minister James Marape wants Japan, Australia and New Zealand to establish an economic bubble with Pacific Island countries as part of the fight against Covid-19.
Marape made his appeal at Friday's 9th Pacific Alliance Leaders Meeting, which was held virtually.
Continue reading "PNG wants Japan-Pacific economic bubble" »
An unmaintained road in Lae PNG's second largest city
YUNGABURRA - The Collins English dictionary defines the word ‘maintain’ as the ‘to keep in proper or good condition’.
And, of course, it is a standard procedure for a successful business to always allocate funds in its budget for repair and maintenance.
Potholes must be filled before they become enormous craters; engine oil must be changed according to the manufacturer’s schedule; tyres must be replaced when worn out. And so a very long list goes on.
Continue reading "750 languages but no word for maintenance" »
The beautiful west coast of New Ireland's Namatanai district where the Kamlapar clan is located
NOOSA - Landowners on the west coast of New Ireland's Namatanai district claim a US-based company is illegally selling carbon credits on the international market that have been obtained by fraud.
The Kamlapar Incorporated Land Group alleges that New Ireland Hardwood Timber (NIHT), and its PNG-registered subsidiary NI Holdings, entered their customary land without clan consent having been engaged by clan members who had no authority to deal with the company.
Continue reading "Namatanai clans fight alleged land fraud" »
I've been everywhere man. James Rice on one of his many trips through PNG
| My Land, My Country
LAE -The motorbike-riding Paradise Foods CEO, James Rich, has ridden his machine from Lae to Gembogl, travelled a portion of the mighty Sepik River, set foot on the banks of Lake Sirunki and admired the salt ponds in Enga.
His approach to living and working in Papua New Guinea has been refreshing for many of us who have grown weary of the negative attention of the media.
Continue reading "‘Buy local like me,’ says the ice cream man" »
Finance minister Don Polye was sacked because he refused to sign documents to facilitate the enormous loan agreement
PORT MORESBY – Senior politicians and others who engineered a K3 billion loan to the Papua New Guinea government in 2014 must be held accountable, says former Treasurer Don Polye
In that year the O'Neill government decided to borrow the money, which represented 75% of the PNG budget, from the Union Bank of Switzerland (UBS).
Continue reading "Polye attacks men behind K3b UBS loan" »
Governor Gary Juffa - "I am beginning to truly understand my grandfather’s deep joy for working the land"
GOVERNOR GARY JUFFA
| Asia-Pacific Anticorruption & Human Rights Advocate Group
KOKODA - Finally my cocoa trees are growing and bearing fruit. Kokoda Block 168 is slowly coming back to life.
As a child I used to wander this small portion of land so treasured by Victor Juffa, my grandfather and adoptive father.
Continue reading "Precious land & the good life on Block 168" »
Crew of the Chinese training ship Qi Jiguang on a visit Dili (Li Mingyu, China Military Online)
WARRADALE, SA - In September 1999, I went to East Timor (Timor-Leste) to work with an aid agency in the aftermath of the 25-year civil war and the savage lead-up to the independence referendum.
It is almost impossible to imagine the devastation that was visited on this former province of Indonesia that became an independent but desperately poor nation.
Continue reading "China & Australia hold perils for PNG" »
Privatising PNG Power will open up consumers to exploitation by price gouging. The better option may be to split PNG Power Ltd into several parts
ADELAIDE - While National Capital District governor Powes Parkop may be right in his analysis of the problem of Port Moresby's unreliable electricity supply, the solution he is proposing is not necessarily the best.
If by privatisation Parkop means selling the power assets lock, stock and barrel to a private company, then I believe he is advocating the wrong solution.
Continue reading "PNG Power: Privatisation would mean exploitation " »
Port Moresby blackout (PNG Loop)
| Academia Nomad
WAIGANI - For three consecutive weeks, electricity in Papua New Guinea’s capital has blacked out in the evenings.
But this is not unusual for Port Moresby, a city dubbed ‘one of the least livable cities in the world’ by The Economist intelligence unit’s Global Liveability Index in the same week.
Continue reading "Powes Parkop is right: privatise PNG Power" »
CARDIFF, UK – I would suggest that the disgraceful eviction of 2,000 people from the ATS settlement is merely the symptom of a Papua New Guinea 'disease'.
Namely, that over the last 100 years, hundreds of businesses have fastened onto the money-making teat that a capital city, in this case Port Moresby, always engenders.
Continue reading "The PNG disease: Capitalism doesn’t care" »
Plunder (Ben Sanders)
PACIFIC PROJECT TEAM
| The Guardian | Edited extracts
Link here to view the entire article together
with interactive maps and data sets
SYDNEY - Millions of tonnes of minerals, fish and timber are extracted from Pacific island nations each year, generating massive profits for foreign multinationals.
Continue reading "The cost to the Pacific of plundered resources" »
The Coral Sea Resort Casino in Honiara
PHILIP KAI MORRE
| Social Worker & Addiction Counsellor
PORT MORESBY - Gambling is a disease of addiction that can have every family member suffering from its effects.
Casinos are highly organised gambling. Gambling for corporate profit.
Continue reading "Casino is the wrong choice for PNG" »
| My Land, My Country
It is an absolutely disgusting move by the National Gaming and Control Board - Papua New Guinea’s gaming regulator - to sign off papers giving the OK for a new casino to be built in Port Moresby. It is even more disgusting that the Board sees fit to announce itself as a partner in the gambling business
LAE - Here’s are some questions for the National Gaming and Control Board.
How will the Board – the regulator – regulate itself as a partner and the investor in the event that there are offences committed against the law?
Continue reading "No casino - we have enough problems" »
ANALOGY BY THE AVISAK N'GEGOS
The chiefs of 49 villages along the Avisak [Sepik River] together with Save the Sepik have organised 408 clans and 51 n’gegos [haus tambaran] into a united nation working to reject the proposed PanAust Frieda River mine
SEPIK RIVER - The Frieda River gold and copper mine can be likened to a vehicle.
When it first started, and was in the exploration stage, we the people of Avisak would see helicopters buzzing and whooshing across the sky almost every day, back and forth across the project site.
Continue reading "Dismantling Frieda, one wheel at a time" »
Capitalism isn't working (Photo - Jonny White)
ADELAIDE - Bernard Corden is right (‘Wages of fear – Contracting out the danger’). Neo-liberal capitalism has very adept at outsourcing hard, dirty or dangerous work to the developing world.
Outsourced to places where the political elites are largely unconcerned about the welfare of their workforce, preferring to focus on the acquisition of wealth for themselves.
Continue reading "19th century capitalism just moved offshore" »
The baret allows people from Korogu village on the Sepik to travel inland to trade their fish for buai, saksak and other crops
| Auna Melo
KEMBIAM, SEPIK RIVER - The Sepik River has hundreds of lakes (raunwara), maybe more than hundreds, that are 300-500 meters from the main river.
These lakes are connected to the river by narrow waterways that allow people to access the lakes from the river.
Continue reading "Barets, barter & buai on the Sepik" »
| Edited extracts
‘No one is free, even the birds are chained to the sky’ - Bob Dylan
BRISBANE - Wages of Fear is a critically acclaimed classic suspense movie starring Yves Montand and based on a French novel, Le Salaire de la Peur, by George Arnaud, written almost seven decades ago.
The narrative remains eerily familiar across Australia and Papua New Guinea, especially if you have ever driven through the Kassam or Daulo passes on the Okuk Highway amidst a convoy of dilapidated trucks.
Continue reading "Wages of fear – contracting out the danger" »
| Business Advantage PNG
PORT MORESBY - In the ten years of data collected by the PNG 100 CEO Survey, some trends are emerging.
We can see where improvements have been made to business conditions in Papua New Guinea, where there has been slippage, and where there is more work to be done.
Continue reading "PNG business remains inhibited by Covid" »
Logging ship at Vanimo, West Sepik
| ACT NOW!
PORT MOREBY - The Forest Authority must stop aiding and abetting logging companies identified by the Internal Revenue Commission as defrauding the State and landowners by evading taxes.
Fraudulent practices around log exports from PNG over the past 20 years could have the cost the country as much as K21 billion.
Continue reading "PNG’s blind eye to K21 billion log steal" »
‘Well I dreamed I saw the knights in armour coming sayin’ something about a Queen / Look at mother nature on the run in the 1970s’ - Neil Young, from After the Gold Rush
BRISBANE - Rio Tinto’s recent destruction of the Juukan Gorge indigenous rock shelters in the Pilbara region of Western Australia attracted extensive media attention and resulted in a federal senate inquiry.
It also led to several resignations of senior executives, humiliated but richly rewarded with golden handshakes.
Continue reading "After the gold rush, the funerals" »
The bulldozers move in on ATS. Marape says he wants them out - but is he being truthful?
NOOSA – I thought this was going to be a good news story, but now I'm not too sure.
Late last week, Papua New Guinea prime minister James Marape seemed to move with lightning speed to stop a developer evicting residents and destroying homes at Port Moresby’s ATS settlement.
However, just as I was putting the story to bed last night, I got some disconcerting news. But first some background.
Continue reading "Can ATS repel the Chinese challenge?" »
Isaac Salip and Komolong ensure the white copra undergoes correct sun drying
DAVID KASEI WAPAR
| Story & Pictures
MADANG - Mirap, a neglected community in the Sumkar District, is the first to host white copra production in Madang Province, thanks to the initiative of a local farmer.
Copra production along this stretch of the Madang–Bogia Highway has seen better days.
Continue reading "White copra project kicks off in Madang" »
Michelle Rooney - "Women are the target of police and municipal authorities who often resort to violence"
MICHELLE NAYAHAMUI ROONEY
| Centre for International Private Enterprise
An abridged extract from ‘Papua New Guinea: Centering the ‘People’s Economy’ in Covid-19 Recovery’. You can link here to the full paper
WASHINGTON DC – Papua New Guinean women are the backbone of the PNG ‘people’s economy’, but they face cultural and social challenges that undermine their resilience and ability to sustain their engage in the economy.
They are the primary caregivers for the country’s burgeoning young population.
Continue reading "Status of women in 'the people’s economy’" »
PNG consumer price index 2018-21
PORT MORESBY - Ten years ago, a bag of 10kg rice cost something like K20. Today, stores sell a 10kg rice bag for between K31 and K35.
Ten years ago a live chicken cost K20. Today it’s K40. By the look of things, the price of live chickens will go all the way to K50 - my prediction for 2023. And we probably wouldn’t notice it.
Continue reading "Social safety net saves us, but we need more" »
| PNGi Forests
PORT MORESBY - For more than 25 years, deep in the remote and inaccessible tropical forests of Papua New Guinea, a huge industrial complex has been operating.
Foreign owned companies have been bulldozing tracks, felling huge trees, cutting logs and dragging them to the coast to be loaded onto ships and sent overseas.
Continue reading "New website reveals secrets of the loggers" »
PORT MORESBY – A discussion paper just released by the Papua New Guinea National Research Institute proposes that PNG create more jobs by discouraging imports of consumables, or goods for immediate consumption, and expanding exports.
Consumables are goods used by individuals and businesses that need to be replaced regularly because they are used up or wear out.
Continue reading "PNG: Import less consumables & create jobs" »
The PNG Forest Authority has failed in its mandate to ensure the sustainable management of PNG’s forests and is pushing back against government reforms
| Act Now!
PORT MORESBY – The increase in duty on round log exports introduced in Papua New Guinea’s 2020 budget is already having a positive effect.
Analysis by community advocacy group Act Now! shows that the higher export duty has increased government revenue and driven down log exports in line with government policy.
Continue reading "Log tax increase must be defended" »
Clothes hanging over a muddy beach at Daru island, just four kilometers from the Australian border
ADELAIDE - I think Michael Kabuni's analysis is basically correct. Australia's policy in relation to Papua New Guinea has indeed been deficient and reactive in some respects.
While I agree that the proposed Daru fisheries deal should bring economic benefits to PNG and the Western Province, I wonder how significant the benefits will be in the long term.
Continue reading "China: Strings implicit & designed to entrap" »
ADELAIDE – Why are Australian taxpayers funding Papua New Guinea’s 111 parliamentarians with $2.9M (K8 million) each for District Services Improvement Fund, and other discretionary funds, with little accountability and proper procurement process?
When Charles Abel was Treasurer from 2017-19, he tried to wind back these funds in the budget, but was over-ruled by prime minister Peter O’Neill.
Continue reading "Australia sleeps on job as China nears" »
Daru, capital of impoverished Western Province, is the planned site of a major Chinese fishery. It will generate many jobs. But Australia opposes the idea
| Asia & the Pacific Policy Society
WAIGANI - Last November, Chinese company Fujian Zhonghong Fishery Limited signed a memorandum of understanding with the Papua New Guinea government to set up a K700 million multi-functional fisheries industrial park in Daru, Western Province.
Unfortunately, debate in Australia surrounding this proposal has not extended beyond Australia’s security concerns as to what this project means for Western Province people.
Continue reading "Reacting to China: The cost of intervention" »
David 'Kitch' Kitchnoge - news of his appointment to a top PNG financial post brought joy to social media
| Nambawan Super
PORT MORESBY - Chairman of Nambawan Super, Reg Monagi, has announced that David Kitchnoge, a sometime contributor to PNG Attitude, has been appointed Chief Investment Officer, the fund’s top investment job.
‘Kitch’ Kitchnoge is a well-respected and experienced investment professional with nearly20 years’ experience in PNG’s financial sector.
Continue reading "Kitch’s brilliant career rocks Facebook" »
| DevPolicy Blog | Edited
PORT MORESBY - Papua New Guinea plans to conduct its fifth national census in July this year.
The last census in 2011 was considered a failure.
This means that, if this census goes ahead, the 2021 census will be the country’s first chance in more than 20 years to gather complete socio-demographic information from across the country.
Continue reading "Another PNG census risks failing" »
Jerry Kapka and a pensive Scott Waide at the Kongo coffee factory near Chuave
| My Land,My Country
LAE - Two years ago, we were passing through from Western Highlands and stopped by at Jerry Kapka’s coffee factory along the Chuave section of the highway.
Mr Kapka is the owner of Kongo Coffee, one of the biggest brands in Papua New Guinea.
Continue reading "Aaah, that highlands coffee...." »
Fly River at Kiunga (OTML)
BANGKOK – The recent visit by an Australian diplomatic team to meet the Western Province governor in Daru resulted in another flare-up in the a chronic, complex and damaging sore that has long been festering away four kilometers from Australia’s northern border.
It will take cool heads with real vision and a genuine sense of shared purpose to tackle this.
Continue reading "Western Province - resource rich & deeply poor" »
Governor Taboi Awi Yoto meets in Daru with Australian High Commission officials. "Australians working behind my back," he says
TABOI AWI YOTO
| Governor, Western Province | Edited
DARU - As expected, lately there has been an increased Australian interest in Western Province after the signing of the memorandum of understanding for a Chinese-led fisheries park on Daru Island.
Last week a team of Australians [from the High Commission] came to Daru to meet with the provincial government to discuss the fisheries park.
Continue reading "Governor: Oz talks on Chinese fishery fail" »
John Conroy - writes on the neglected part of PNG's economy without which the country would probably not function
JOHN D CONROY
CANBERRA - In my recently-published book, The Informal Economy in Development, I have tried to explain what ‘informal economy’ means, and why it matters for Papua New Guinea.
Economic informality is often misunderstood and disrespected. My book argues that many kinds of informal economic activity are socially-useful.
They should not be banned and informal workers should not be treated unfairly.
Continue reading "The people who put food on PNG’s table" »
Under the watchful eye of Huawei, PNG DataCo lays the Kumul submarine cable off Vanimo
| The Yegiora Files | Edited
MADANG - Technology is increasingly becoming an important part of human life and most of what we do today is influenced by our use of technology.
As a developing country, Papua New Guinea is seeing technological changes unfold with the help of China.
Continue reading "Huawei’s vital role in digital rise" »
Sir Mekere Morauta - brought Papua New Guinea back from the brink of economic disaster
| DevPolicy Blog
CANBERRA - Following independence, the Papua New Guinea economy fared relatively well. From 1980 to 1994 it grew at an average of 4% a year.
It was a bumpy ride though, with peaks and troughs in growth, notably the closure of the Panguna mine in 1989 and the start of the Kutubu oil project in 1992.
Continue reading "Morauta’s masterclass in economic reform" »