Tag Archives: Gulf Province

PNG gas project teething issues normal, says minister

Dateline Pacific | Radio New Zealand | 1 August 2019

A landowner threat to shut down a major gas project in Papua New Guinea has been averted for the time being.

On Wednesday Baimuru landowners in Gulf province announced they would shut down the $US13-billion Papua LNG gas project in their district.

They were unhappy with the developer, French company Total, over issues around landowner company contracts in the project.

The Minister of Petroleum and Energy Kerenga Kua told Johnny Blades that these were merely teething issues in the project, and talks between stakeholders have resolved the issue for now.

Kerenga Kua: It’s a new project and people trying to get to understand each other. So, misunderstandings can arise and also temperaments can be affected. So, these are merely teething issues. And I think it’s been substantially resolved already by a meeting last night, between Total, the department and landowners last night. So it’s by the by, by now.

Johnny Blades: There was a grievance expressed by these landowners over the non-renewal of contracts for some of the companies or entities in work associated with this fledgling project. So are you saying that they’re back on deck, or at least Total have agreed to look at this again?

KK: Well, it’s important always for people to talk between themselves and… I must express my concern that the landowners resorted to the extreme course of action available to them pretty quickly, without firstly exhausting all avenues of talking with Total. As leaders of that community, they needed to be wary of the words they use and the actions they take, because the project is going to be there for the long term and everybody will benefit out of it, and the first line of people  to benefit from that will be the local people themselves. For that reason they needed to develop a culture of tolerance and dialogue, so resorting to threats in terms of shutting down and talking about a Bougainville-type issue and all this is very unhealthy.  Total have made some decisions, those are business decisions that have to be made during the preparatory stages because the actual determination of who the landowners are is a process that would have to take place in accordance with the Oil and Gas Act. At this stage my message to everybody is this: we need to understand that there is a very clear difference between being a landowner in fact and being a landowner in law for the purposes of the Oil and Gas Act. Now, the landowners themselves know as a matter of faith who the landowners are, they themselves know it, and they organise themselves into groups and try to get spin-off businesses, etc. However, for the purpose of being determined landowner for the purposes of Oil and Gas Act, there’s a process that must be completed, and that process is still ongoing.

JB: And that will be sorted in due course?

KK: In due course, when I sign off on what they call the landowner determination, then that becomes the  landowners in law and in fact, for the purposes of Oil and Gas benefits flow.

JB: Because of the example of the first big LNG project up in the Highlands, do you think these Gulf province communities, landowner communities, have good reason to worry? You know, they’ve seen how the Hela and Southern Highlands communities have not had the benefits that were promised them, and perhaps that’s why they’re concerned, so they’re just trying to get things moving?

KK: Yeah, from the outside, it’s difficult to see what things the landowners have received and what things they have not received. And I had the same issue before I was Minister for Petroleum. But what I have seen now coming in is that the scenario is this: the state is substantially up to date in honouring its commitments. And I thought differently, I thought completely differently. And I used to push that barrel on behalf of the landowners before. And I still do in the residual areas that remain to be attended to. But what I’ve noticed is that the state and the developers in particular substantially complied with their obligations to pass the benefits on to the landowners. Where the issues are, are where, for example, the landowners themselves have differences amongst themselves, then they take the matter to court and the court then issues that an injunction to freeze disbursement of entitlements to the landowner until those court proceedings completed. That’s one area.

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Landowners in PNG threaten to shutdown LNG gas project

French oil and gas company Total gas station. REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier

Radio New Zealand | 31 July 2019

Landowners in Papua New Guinea’s Gulf province say they’ve begun an action to shut down the Papua LNG gas project.

Baimuru landowners are unhappy with the developer, French company Total, over non-renewal of landowner company contracts at the project site and other issues.

Baimuru is the location of the fledgling project’s gas wellheads, which landowners say they will block access to as part of their protest.

The Landowners are demanding the Department of Petroleum and Energy intervene as soon as possible to intervene.

They seek a recognition of their rights to engage in and benefit from spin-off benefits and contracts from the $US13 billion project.

The Landowners were expected to hold a press conference in Port Moresby on Wednesday afternoon to announce the shutdown and their demands.

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Landowners Threatening To Derail Major Resource Extraction Projects

Landowners protest against Barrick Gold and the Porgera mine earlier in 2019

Mal Taime and Gorethy Kenneth | Post Courier | April 3, 2019

LANDOWNER groups are threatening to derail two major resource developments in the country.

These are the Papua LNG in the Gulf of Papua and Porgera Gold Mine in Enga, where a Wardens Hearing on developer Barrick’s bid for renewal of its licence was conducted yesterday with hundreds crowding the Paiam Oval in Porgera.

The event nearly turned into factional disagreements which almost turned nasty before police cooled the situation to allow Chief Mining Warden Commission Andrew Gunua to hear the company and landowner representatives.

Porgera Joint Venture executive managing director Tony Esplin, in presenting the company’s application to extend its operations, appealed for the people’s understanding saying PJV mining operations was for the people.

Locals supporting PJV’s extension bid wore yellow with banners saying “Barrick PJV to stay” while those opposed also came with banners.

The fracas occurred when former Porgera Development Authority chairman Jonathan Paraia objected and said his faction would be represented by their lawyer.

Mr Gunua told Mr Paraia that he will conduct the warden hearing fairly and listen to all parties, but this did not go down well with Mr Paraia’s faction.

Meanwhile, in Port Moresby, a landowner group from the Gulf Province aggrieved by the Papua LNG announcements demanded in a letter to Prime Minister Peter O’Neill to defer the signing of the agreement for the Gulf (Papua) LNG project until all legal requirements are met. Failing that, they will go to court to stop the signing if no response is forthcoming by Thursday (tomorrow).

They claim they are the legitimate landowners and only owners of the PRL 15 land sites where the wellheads are located.

Executives of the Aumake Nairu Orumako Land Group, in a press conference claimed they own over 100,000 hectares of land in the Elk Antelope.

The incorporated landowner group (ILG NBR 513) chairman Apae Koivi and secretary Kepsy Koivi said from day one they have never been engaged in any negotiations pertaining to the Papua LNG despite them being the legitimate landowners.

“Of course for the last three years we have not made any noise because we wanted to have all legal documents and instruments in place, and now that we have it in our hand, we are coming out,” chairman Koivi said.

“We the Aumake Nairu Orumako Land Group now have an ILG certificate from the Department of Lands which makes us the legal landowner group. We are not closing the Gulf LNG, no, all we want is deferral of the signing so we can iron the legal issues, and so that we can find out who has represented PRL 15 all these years,” he said.

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Fighting at LNG site poses threat to workers: Police

PNG Liquefied Natural Gas Plant near Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.Photographer: Richard Dellman via ExxonMobil Corp.

The National aka The Loggers Times | November 5, 2018

POLICE are concerned that bad blood between a group of Highlanders and locals at the liquefied natural gas site in Gulf over a sorcery-related killing is posing a threat to the company.

Provincial police commander Inspector Silva Sika said the killing at an LNG site village had led to frequent rows and fighting, making it unsafe for the workers.

The deceased was originally from Lufa in Eastern Highlands.

“Police will be deployed again to the site to settle the situation and protect others from outside (the province) working there,” Sika said.

He said relatives of the deceased had attacked the suspect’s brother at the Wabo sub-station village.

Earlier they kidnapped four locals using guns and bush knives and destroyed gardens and crops. Police had settled the matter but trouble started again. Police said they had to make arrests but after few weeks tensions rose again between the groups.

“I have done peace and agreements between the groups but it suddenly started again,” he said.

The deceased was found floating in the river near the village close to the LNG site.

At least one person out of 10 accused of sorcery has been killed and one-third were permanently injured, a joint study by three universities in three provinces revealed.

The research recorded 357 sorcery accusation cases from Enga, Bougainville and Port Moresby between January 2016 and October 2017.

There were 185 victims and at least 20 people killed, with a large number suffering permanent physical injuries. Australian National University Associate Professor Miranda Forsyth said the study was undertaken by the university, the PNG National Research Institute and Divine Word University supported by the Australian government through Pacific Women Shaping Pacific Development Programme.

Forsyth said of the cases identified in Enga, at least 37 per cent of the incidents resulted in killing through the use of torture, followed by seven per cent of cases in Bougainville and four per cent of cases in Port Moresby.

She said that four per cent of cases in Enga resulted in tribal fighting.

The study revealed that 63 per cent of the total in Enga resulted in major physical violence and so did 36 per cent in Bougainville and 31 per cent in Port Moresby,”

Sixty-seven per cent of the cases in Enga resulted in the burning of the accused, seven per cent in Bougainville and eight per cent in Port Moresby.

Other forms of accusation included forced imprisonment, damage of property, threats, minor physical violence and clothing removed.

The PNG government developed a comprehensive sorcery and witchcraft accusation-related violence (SARV) national action plan in 2015 to address the problem of sorcery accusation-related violence.

The Australian government is working in partnership with Papua New Guinea in all core areas through the Pacific Women Shaping Pacific Development Programmeand justice services and stability for development programmes.

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Australian company given green light to extract PNG coal

Mayur MD, Paul Mulder with Gulf Provincial Governor, Chris Havieta, signing an agreement in 2017

Radio New Zealand | 22 June 2018

An Australian company has been granted an environmental permit to extract coal in Papua New Guinea’s Gulf Province.

Mayur Resources has been given the green light to proceed with an exploration licence, owned by the company’s subsidiary in PNG, Waterford Ltd.

It’s the first time that the Conservation and Environmental Protection Authority (CEPA) has issued an environmental permit for coal bulk sampling in PNG to enable commercial grade shipments.

According to PNG Industry News, the conditions of the permit include the submission and implementation of a robust environmental management plan.

Managing director Paul Mulder said it was an exciting step in bringing PNG coal to the international market as a potential new source of energy.

The company was looking to confirm suitability of the coal for use in domestic power generation.

Mayur is also developing a proposed 50MW power station near Lae at the Western Tidal Basin in Morobe Province.

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“Government Will Not Repeat Mistake With Papua LNG”

Post Courier | May 30, 2018

PRIME Minister Peter O’Neill has told Parliament that the government will not repeat the same mistakes when dealing with the new Papua LNG project or any other resource project.

He said the developer of Papua LNG would have to complete social mapping and landowner identification before any project is developed.

Mr O’Neill also said the government would review the laws to make it compulsory for consultation with provincial governments and landowners.

“We may have to review the legislation around the consultation process, but in terms of the resources sectors in mining, petroleum and gas industry, I think there is quite a very good consultation process between the stakeholders, especially the landowners and the provincial governments,” he said.

“I would also want to announce that in terms of the second LNG project for Elk Antelope, I want to inform Parliament that we have also included the Governor for Gulf in the State negotiation team.”

He said this follows the precedence set by the Somare government in the first LNG project where the governors for Southern Highlands and Hela were included in the negotiation teams so they are fully engaged in every stage of the negotiation that is taking place.

“I certainly do not want to make the mistakes of the first LNG, where landowners were not properly identified now we are having a difficult process of clan vetting as all sorts of clans are popping up and it can be a cumbersome and difficult exercise,” he said.

“That’s what we are trying to avoid and we want to make sure that developers take on the responsibility as stipulated in the Oil and Gas Act and in the Mining Act.

“They must identify and do the social mapping properly so that the right benefits go to the rightful landowners and stakeholders in the projects,” he said.

Mr O’Neill was responding to questions from Gulf Governor Chris Haiveta relating to provincial government representation in the extractive industry and the level of consultation and the time which these consultations are allowed for by the provincial governments and the resource owners.

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Silly season comes early in Gulf

Australian firm taps into Gulf resources

The National aka The Loggers Times | December 11, 2017

AUSTRALIAN company Mayur Resources now has an exclusive licence to develop a resource, energy and industrial complex in Gulf.
An agreement was signed on Friday between Governor Chris Haiveta and Mayur managing director Paul Mulder in Port Moresby.
Haiveta said the agreement would use resources it had discovered in Gulf such as iron sands, zircon, ilmenite, coal and high grade silica sands for domestic use and export opportunities.
He said this would be done while leveraging favourable port areas in Gulf and the domestic market obligation for gas for a petrochemical industry.
“Our country is in an energy crisis and we continue to send foreign currency offshore and import foreign liquid fuels at a far higher cost and far higher polluting than using our own domestic energy sources,” he said.
“Other Asia-Pacific countries are using their domestic energy and industrial resources.”
PNG is importing most of our energy and nation building products even such things as cement, lime and diesel that enriches other countries rather than our own.
“Our Prime Minister has advocated cheap, reliable accessible energy while doing this in an environmentally beneficial manner that improves our current state.”
Haiveta said the time for talking about the concept was over.
“We need action. We need growth. We need employment. We need industry. We need prosperity. And we only get this by having access to cheap, reliable power,” he said.
“Gulf today has taken the next step to use its gas, iron coal and other mineral sand resources and bring us out of the dark and poverty.
“Our plans are nothing different to what Japan, Australia, New Caledonia, West Papua, Vietnam, Malaysia, Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand.”
Mulder said Mayur Resources had been working for over five years to explore minerals in Gulf, Central and Western.

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