Post Courier | September 18, 2018
GULF Governor Chris Haiveta has told his people that current agreements for oil, gas and forestry were not negotiated in their favour.
Delivering his independence message in Kerema last weekend, Mr Haiveta said he wants all agreements under the UBSA and LBSA re-visited and re-negotiated.
He said he felt his people – the majority resource owners – had been short changed and robbed of their resources.
Mr Haiveta and his people hosted Governor General Sir Bob Dadae over the Independence long weekend.
He said: “Our province recognises that current resource agreements in oil and gas and forestry have not been negotiated in the province’s favour.
“This has meant that essential and strategic infrastructure like ports, towns and roads in the project areas have not been built, leaving the province, Kikori district where the projects are located, particularly to miss out completely.
“Therefore we are moving in this term of parliament to ensure that all these agreements are revisited and they are legally compliable and enforceable by all parties.
“We have resolved the UBSA and LBSA agreements including the Gulf landowners and Provincial Governments benefits from the existing Oil and LNG Pipeline to Caution Bay be re-negotiated.”
He said that for the future, ‘we will ensure that resources agreements are properly negotiated and drafted to include all necessary and possible infrastructure needs for the project areas, including the upcoming LNG, coal mining, limestone, mineral sand mining and timber harvesting’.
Mr Haiveta said: “We are glad the national government has started the process of devolution of powers from Waigani to provinces, and Gulf Province is poised to receive decentralisation of powers soon.
“As a step forward to this, we will be signing the Service Delivery Partnership Agreements soon which will pave the way for a synchronised delivery of services between the two open electorates and the provincial government.”
He said his people have abundant renewable and non renewable natural resources both on the land and in the seas.
“Our sea boundaries encompass an area that is twice our land mass, we have significant marine resources with reef systems such as Pocklington and Eastern Fields that remain unexplored commercially and for tourism.
“We also have the largest prawn fishery in the country which is exploited directly from Port Moresby.
“Our forestry industry composed from Port round logging exports brings little benefit to the province as it is a nationally controlled activity.”