Benny Geteng | Post Courier | February 7, 2019
THE proposed K400 million coal-fired power plant to be built in Lae is in jeopardy as PNG Power Limited is not considering the power option put forward by developer Mayur Resources.
PPL acting managing director Carolyn Blacklock, when responding to questions posed by the Post-Courier in regards to the power purchasing agreement sent by Mayur to PPL and how the PPL is handling the proposal at present, said PNG Power is not considering the Mayur proposal.
This means the bid to have the coal power plant in Lae is in limbo since the PPA approval will grant Mayur the green light to go ahead with the project construction phase.
Ms Blacklock said PNG Power has a clear IPP Policy that supports competitive bidding of planned generation, transmission and distribution investments.
“It is not a planned activity of PNG Power and is not being considered,” she said.
Mayur managing director Paul Mulder said PNG Power is under obligation to assess the power purchasing agreement (PPA).
“The PPL board has the obligation to assess our bid and make recommendations this year,” he said.
Energy minister Sam Basil had earlier written to PPL board chairman Peter Nupiri in October to request PPL board to assess Mayur’s proposal since their bid was solicited by PNG Power through a letter by Chris Bais (PPL director strategic planning and business development) in 2015, granting Mayur leave to send a PPA proposal for assessment.
Mayur Resources submitted a proposal that is still yet to be assessed by the PPL board.
This now contradicts Ms Blacklock’s response since according to Mr Basil’s letter, until the review of Mayur’s proposal is assessed, then he will accept the PPL’s board decision.
The coal power plant in Lae is to be spearheaded by Mayur Resources Limited and is expected to utilise coal seams extracted from the seas of Gulf province and is anticipated to generate revenue for Lae City Authority and the Morobe provincial government.
Mr Basil, Lae MP John Rosso and Morobe governor Ginson Saonu have backed the proposed project to be built in Lae .
It is expected to generate K4m annually to the provincial coffers, among other benefit