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Thursday, 22 February

00:54

Mining Policies Need To Be Reviewed: Minister "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Minister For Mining Johnson Tuke Says The Policies Governing The Mining Sector In Papua New Guinea Need To Be Revisited.

Matthew Vari | Post Courier | February 22, 2018

Minister for Mining Johnson Tuke says the policies governing the mining sector in Papua New Guinea need to be revisited.

He said much of the legislations governing the sector are still from the colonial era.

Mr Tuke said with the strong support from Prime Minister ONeill and government caucus he is determined to take stock of benefits to landowners that make changes for the country to have a greater share in its own wealth.

I think all our mining policies are more or less colonial. Are we still in the colonial times? We are moving forward, Mr Tuke said.

...

00:48

ONeill and Allan stitch up another huge land grab "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Philippines President Duterte and his Agriculture Secretary want to plant 1 million hectares of rice in Papua New Guinea by 2023

Prime Minister Peter ONeill and Agriculture Minister Benny Allan have promised the Philippines government at least one million hectares of land in Papua New Guinea for Filipino farmers to grow rice, according to media reports.

The 1 million hectares [10,000 square kilometres] will be leased to Filipino companies and thousands of Filipino farmers and agriculture graduates are expected to head to PNG, according to the countrys Agriculture Secretary, Emmanuel F. Piol.  

The Ph...

00:48

Ok Tedi workers sacked for peaceful protest "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Mine group sacked

Shirley Mauludu | The National aka The Loggers Times | 22 February 2018

THE Ok Tedi Mining Ltd has sacked a group of employees who were staging a protest at the mine site on Tuesday, telling them in a letter that their action was illegal.
Some of employees, who arrived on a charter flight yesterday in Port Moresby, claimed there were 191 of them who were issued termination letters on Tuesday. They were told to leave the site on a charter flight yesterday.
Henry Kuso, a spokesman for those who arrived at Jackson Airport, in Port Moresby, yesterday, said the company arranged three charter flights yesterday out of Tabubil in Western.
Mining Minister Johnson Tuke was unable to comment when contacted yesterday.
Ok Tedi managing director Peter Graham could not be reached for comment yesterday. But he had confirmed with The National on Tuesday that the protest had not affected the company operations.
The industrial action was illegal since it did not follow the grievance process and was not supported by the union, he said.
Management is addressing the matter in accordance with company pol...

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Wednesday, 21 February

23:53

More Aircraft Maintanance Engineers (AMEs) return to Air Niugini "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Following the completion of their four year training at the Air New Zealand Aviation Institute in Christchurch, New Zealand, ten Air Niugini Aircraft Maintenance Engineers (AMEs) including two females have returned to Port Moresby and joined the aircraft maintenance workforce at Air Niugini Engineering.

The AMEs include Patrick Misina, Melvin Paru, Breanne Ume-Taule, Simon Silas, Temuera Samuel, Dennis Kasup, Bernard Kari, Branden Boeha, Jeremy Camillus and Miriam Tai whose training was fully funded by Air Niugini under its Engineering Cadet Program. It cost the airline over K6million to train the ten AMEs.

Air Niugini Chief Executive Officer, Mr Simon Foo in welcoming them home yesterday said the airline invests a lot of resources into training young Papua New Guineans and the results are very rewarding.

Mr Foo said Aviation is a highly regulated and compliant industry and we are serious about training, whether it is for engineers, pilots, cabin crew, or ground staff. Air Niugini invests about K600,000 in training each young Papua New Guinean engineer or pilot cadet. The achievement by these ten young people is something we at Air Niugini, their families and our country can be proud of.

Following a four year cadet program, it normally takes 12 to 14 months before the AMEs can get their PNG License.

An Aircraft Maintenance Engineer(AME) is a trained person who does the maintenance requirements of the aircraft including aircraft servicing, parking, jacking, component replacements, inspections, defect, troubleshooting, modifications and repairs.

Air Niugini currently has 32 AMEs, 4 of them are female.

Mr Foo added that the Board and management of Air Niugini will be investing in hangar facilities at the Jacksons airport that will eventually allow heavy maintenance of aircraft to be carried out in Papua New Guinea, resulting in cost savings and further up-skilling of the Papua New Guinean work force.

In 2017, the first Dash 8 aircraft heavy check was done in Port Moresby and Air Niugini expects another to be completed mid this year.

This will reduce overseas expenditure as well as build the PNG Engineering staff capacity. These ten AMEs are fortunate to be among those who will be using this facility and they are the future of Air Niugini. Foo said.

Meanwhile, Mr Foo also said Air Niugini is working to improve and standardize its employ...

22:37

PNGs losses from Solwara 1 currently over K350 million "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Solwara 1 is chewing its way through PNG taxpayer funds at an alarming rate

In 2014, the State borrowed US$120 million [K375 million] from BSP to buy a 15% stake in the proposed Solwara 1 seabed mine.

Nautilus Minerals says US$113 million from the loan was paid to the company in December 2014.

It is not clear what has happened to the other US$7 million, the balance of the funds borrowed, but at the moment the governments investment in Solwara 1 is not looking like a very good bet.

While the States partner, Nautilus Minerals is on financial life support and haemorrhaging senior staff, the State has written down its investment by over K260 million.

The latest financial report from Eda Kopa (Solwara) Limit...

20:00

Despite repeated promises, PNGs greatest ever scandal continues "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

SABLEDDIE TANAGO | Act Now!

PORT MORESBY - Today is the first anniversary of the presentation of a 10,000 signature petition to the Department of Lands demanding the cancellation of the SABL (special agriculture and business) leases.

2018 also marks five-years since the SABL Commission of Inquiry exposed the full extent of the illegal land grab, which affects more than 10% of the whole country.

But, despite repeated promises from the ONeill government to cancel the leases, stretching back to 2013, almost nothing has been done.

The governments response to the illegal SABL land grab is the greatest scandal this country has ever seen.

Even the brave landowners who have struggled through the courts to have leases declared illegal, without any help or support from the government, or have stood up and defied the logging companies despite attacks from the police, still have foreign companies occupying their soil.

A list released two weeks ago by the Lands Department revealed that of 75 SABL leases examined in the Commission of Inquiry, only 10 have been cancelled, five of those were at the direction of the courts and four voluntarily surrendered.

Meanwhile, as the government delays get ever longer, most of the SABL files have disappeared from the Department of Lands.

Fifty thousand square kilometres of land, more than 10% of the entire nation given away illegally yet the government does almost nothing to undo the wrong and indeed is still allowing logging companies to plunder the forests.

With APEC leaders now preparing to visit PNG, the SABL land grab is a huge embarrassment for the nation.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights slammed the PNG government over its failure to protect its own citizens during his visit two-weeks ago, saying many communities have been forcibly evicted from their homes, often reportedly violently, with impunity and allegedly sometimes with the complicity of local police.

It seems the whole world knows about and has condemned the land grab but the government is either unwilling or unable to cancel the majority of the leases.

If the government wants to show we are still a sovereign nation, they must immediately give the land back to local people, evict the foreign companies and pay compensation to the communities for the losses and damage they have suffered.

19:00

Singirok says control of lethal weapons entry has broken down "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Singirok_Jerry
Jerry Singirok

NEWS REPORT | PNG National Broadcasting Corporation

PORT MORESBY The chairman of the Guns Control Committee and former commander of the PNG Defence Force Major-General (retired) Jerry Singirok has said the Papua New Guinea government needs to invest heavily in border security.

The committee was set up in 2005 to come up with recommendation to address issues of gun violence in the country.

It made 244 recommendations but nothing was done by the government to address them.

Mr Singirok, speaking on the NBC's Morning Tru program, said stringent control measures should be taken at PNGs border entry points to monitor and curb deadly weapons.

"The other biggest issue is that we have a border security problem, he said.

The government has not invested much in security forces to ensure border control is enforced.

For example, Wutung-Batas, the Indonesian check point, is the weakest, weakest point.

18:00

Catholic-run family planning in PNG: assistance or oppression? "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Family planningCATHERINE GRAUE | Pacific Beat | Australian Broadcasting Corporation | Extract

You can read the full article here

SYDNEY - Pressure is mounting on Papua New Guinea's Government to reconsider its contracts with health clinics run by the Catholic Church, amid concerns some are deliberately failing to meet their obligations of providing a full family planning service.

While advocating natural methods of contraception, the Church insists it also provides counselling and a patient referral system, which is a requirement of its contract with the PNG Health Department.

But family planning advocates claim items being provided to Catholic clinics by the Government go unused and are being destroyed, while others report spot checks are being carried out by senior church officials.

The Catholic Church officially promotes the natural "ovulation method", but the outspoken views of people like Rolando Santos, the Bishop of Alotau, point to a much harder line which is causing considerable anger among health professionals.

"They should not use artificial means in order to prevent the natural process from taking place," he told the ABC's Pacific Beat program.

"They have to respect the plan of God, of nature."

Family planning advocate Wendy Stein, who set up the NGO Spacim Pikinini which translates as "space your children" to provide implants to women living in remote PNG, has raised her concerns about the Catholic Church.

"They're out of touch and I feel like they're oppressing the indigenous people in PNG," she said.

"We've had instances where the bishops send teams out to villages with propaganda and discourage people, whether they're Catholic or not, about the implant."

She has had her own run-ins with Father Santos, who questioned the work of her NGO.

"I've had conversations with the Bishop here, he called me probably 18 months ago to have a discussion about it and told me stop what I was doing, it was wrong and that I'd go to hell," she told Pacific Beat.

Father Santos said his big concern is that NGOs like Spacim Pikinni...

14:49

Indonesia says Uncle Sam to lift last bans on Kopassus troops "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

https://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/world/us-to-lift-ban-on-indonesian-kopassus-troops/news-story/54a4128144e2d34cef1924f1a948e170

Indonesia says Uncle Sam to lift last bans on Kopassus troops

AMANDA HODGE,NIVELL RAYDA
The Australian12:00AM February 21, 2018
Indonesia says the US has undertaken to lift the remaining restrictions on engagement with Indonesias Kopassus special forces, ending a 19-year ban on the unit linked to civilian killings and human rights abuses in West Papua, Aceh and East Timor.

Former Indonesian military commander Moeldoko, now chief of staff to President Joko Widodo, said US ambassador Joseph Donovan had confirmed on Monday during a meeting at the presidential palace that the US would gradually lift the last restrictions on the military unit.

This follows a request last month from Defence Minister Ryacudu Ryamizard to his US counterpart Jim Mattis to end the ban, imposed in 1999, on US engagement with the unit.

Successive Indonesian governments have lobbied for the ban to be lifted, but have had only partial success despite support from the Pentagon. Former president Barack Obama in 2010 lifted the outright ban on US military contact with Kopassus, although its 6000 members are still banned from travelling to the US or training with US forces.

In a statement issued after Mondays meeting, General Moeldoko said Mr Donovan had emphasised the importance of co-operation between the two armed forces in preserving stability in the Asia-Pacific region and said the US intended to reopen the possibility of a military training co-operation, (beginning) with Kopassus.

But the US embassy in Jakarta appeared reluctant to confirm General Moeldokos statement yesterday, or give a time line for when US training of Kopassus might resume.

Instead an embassy spokesman said: As Secretary Mattis trip to Indonesia demonstrated, we are committed to deepening our defence co-operation with Indonesia and are seeking opportunities for further engagement in various areas. All engagement activities are conducted in accordance with US law.

We support Indonesias efforts to promote human rights and the rule of law, and we continue to discuss the importance of accountability for past abuses.

The move would be in line with the unveiling last month of a shift in US national security focus from counter-terrorism to contain the rising power of China and Russia.

American forces are prevented under the Leahy Law...

13:04

Record insurance payout for Tonga following Cyclone Gita "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

In the wake of Cyclone Gita, the government of Tonga received a US$3.5 million payout from the Pacific Catastrophe Risk Insurance Company (PCRIC) based on its insurance cover against tropical cyclones.

Funds were transferred after seven days of the cyclone event, providing the government with rapid-response financing to support disaster-relief efforts and effective service delivery to the affected areas

Tonga is one of five Pacific Island countries that purchased catastrophe risk insurance from PCRIC a regional catastrophe insurance platform that offers governments insurance cover against climate and seismic hazards, currently tropical cyclones and earthquake/tsunamis. PCRIC policies are, designed to payout within 10 days of a triggered event to provide immediate access to liquidity for disaster response.

Cyclone Gita reached its peak intensity as a Category 4 cyclone before making landfall on Tonga, which caused wide spread damage largely due to destructive wind strength.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the affected communities across the Pacific, said PCRIC Chief Executive, David Traill.

Despite the tragic circumstances, we are proud to have been able to provide rapid funding to the Tongan government within seven days of Gita making landfall which will provide immediate support for the Tongan government to meet the needs of local communities.

Cyclone Gita has reinforced the critical importance of a coordinated disaster management capability across the Pacific, and PCRIC stands as a critical support in ensuring governments can act quickly following disasters.

It is clear from the record size of the payout to Tonga that the increased level of coverage provided to Pacific Island countries through the establishment and capitalisation of PCRIC by our donor partners has made a postive impact on the support we are able to deliver to the Pacific Island region.

We would like to acknowledge the generous capital contributions made by the governments of Germany, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States of America who have made this result possible, and the World Bank for their role in supporting the overall PCRAFI Programme.

PCRIC is committed to ongoing efforts to develop new products to increase the financial protection of governments against the impacts of climate change including drought, excess rainfall and other seismic hazards.

SOU...

13:02

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

210218GIZO UNDER CURVIEW TONIGHT
By Aloysius Laukai
As of this evening the Solomon Islands,Western Province Premier has issued a curfew for people in Gizo which started at 10 pm and till 6am.
All Liquor outlets to close including Schools in Gizo until further notice.
The escapees are still at large and the Premier has appealed to them to surrender voluntarily to authorities and discuss the situation according to our Melanesian culture.
Meanwhile, more Police reinforcements have also arrived in Gizo to contain the situation if the need arises and also to maintain law and order in and around Gizo.
Ends

12:58

Brisbane Broncos Team to face PNG Hunters "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

WAYNE Bennett has pulled a surprise by naming Anthony Milford to play against the Hunters in Papua New Guinea on Saturday.

Milford will make a return from shoulder surgery off the bench in the match in Port Moresby.

Sam Scarlett will start in the halves alongside Kodi Nikorima, with Milford to join the fray at some stage of the game against the Intrust Super Cup champions of last year.



BRONCOS TEAM TO PLAY PNG HUNTERS
Saturday, 3.30pm (PNG time)

1. Jamayne Isaako
2. Jonus Pearson
3. James Roberts
4. Tom Opacic
5. Jordan Kahu
6. Sam Scarlett
7. Kodi Nikorima
8. Matt Lodge
9. Todd Murphy
10. Sam Thaiday
11. Alex Glenn
12. Matt Gillett
13. Josh McGuire
Interchange:
14. Anthony Milford
15. Joe Ofahengaue
16. Korbin Sims
17. Tevita Pangai
18. Jake Turpin
19. Corey Oates
20. Jaydn SuA
Coach: Jason Demetriou

Source: broncos.com.au / Photo: Broncos media 

12:28

SP PNG Hunters name 22-man squad for trial match against Brisbane Broncos "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

SP PNG Hunters coach Michael Marum has named a 22 man squad which will be trimmed down to 20 before their pre -season clash against the Brisbane Broncos on Saturday in Port Moresby.

He said many of the players including captain Ase Boas who was not named in the 22 are nursing niggling injuries and will be assessed over the next few days.

Stargroth Amean will captain the team for this match.

The 22 man squad is:

1. Stargroth AMEAN
2. Wawa PAUL
3. Adex WERA
4. Willie MINOGA
5. Brendon GOTUNA
6. Charlie SIMON
7. Watson BOAS
8. Moses MENINGA
9. Wartovo PUARA
10. Dilbert ISAAC
11. Nixon PUTT
12. John ANDY
13. Adam KORAVE
Interchange
14. Sailas GAHUNA
15. Enock MAKI
16. Patrick MOREA
17. Rhadley BRAWA
18. McKenzie YER
19. Junior RAU
20. Butler MORRIS
21. Edene GABBIE
22. Baundo ABA
(Two to be omitted)

Coach: Michael MARUM

The SP Hunters will have their Captains Run at 2.30pm on Friday at the National Football Stadium, Boroko.

12:24

Students hospitalized after been hit by PMV Bus "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Frustrated pedestrians at the 9-mile market in Port Moresby burnt a PMV Bus after it hit a student and bumped three taxi vehicles early this morning.

Eyewitnesses said angry commuters bashed the driver and his crew as police arrived on scene to calm the situation.
The eyewitnesses said the PMV bus lost control of its breaks as it made its way round the 9-mile roundabout to avoid hitting oncoming vehicles when it hit the student.

The bus was attempting to escape the scene when two police vehicles parked beside the market stopped it.
The student hit was rushed to Gerehu General Hospital whilst the driver and his crew were taken into custody by the police.

Meanwhile, residents at the 9-mile area have called on city authorities to look into setting up proper bus stops for commuters to avoid such an incident to happen again.
The frustrated residents said that responsible authorities should seriously look into setting up bigger and proper bus stops at the 9-mile area as most commuters risk standing along roadside to hop on PMV buses.  PNGFM

11:03

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Picture of the earlier story on Bougainvilleans caught on Solomon Islands waters yesterday.

Gizo seized

10:46

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Bougainville independence referendum need to be ready by December 2018

Papua New Guineas autonomous province of Bougainville will have to be ready and prepared for the independence referendum by December 2018, six months before the vote is taken.

Both the Government of Papua New Guinea and the Autonomous Bougainville Government have set 16 June, 2019 as the referendum day for the island nation of just over 249,000 population.

Two aspects of the Bougainville Peace Agreement signed in 2001 need to be met before the referendum the creation of good governance structures and the disposal of any remaining weapons.

These conditions were highlighted by the acting director of Bougainville Affairs, John Avira while briefing Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) Senior Officials in Port Moresby last week on Sunday.

We are working in partnership with the ABG and key stakeholders to ensure that Bougainville is weapons free by December, said Avira.

Key challenges identified 16 months before the proposed referendum includes electoral roll, question on the ballot paper, enrolment criteria, funding, security and awareness.

The PNG Constitution says the Referendum question or questions must be jointly agreed to by the two Governments after consultation. One option must be a choice of separate independence for Bougainville. There could be one question, asking whether voters support independence, yes or no. Or if the governments agree, the question could be two or more options.

An ABG factsheet clearly spells out that some options that might be considered are: 1. Continue the same level of autonomy as now 2. More autonomy than now 3. Free association with PNG 4. Independence to be gradually attained over a period of years 5. Immediate independence, if there is sufficient capacity in Bougainville and if agreed by the National Government 6. Deferring a decision on independence until after another referendum is held.

The two governments will research and consult to help decide and agree on the final question or questions, said Avira.

At the end of the exercise we want to see that peace must prevail.

The entity to conduct the referendum the Referendum Commission was set up over a year ago with a proposed budget of K20 million (US$6.2 million) but no appointments have been made to the Commission to oversee the independence referendum.

Solomon Islands has vested interest in the outcome of the referendum, said foreign affairs secretary, Peter Kenilorea.

We have a common crossing border between Bougainville and the Shortland Islands. Wed like to partners with the Government of PNG and the ABG in the referendum process.

Ends

10:35

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

POPUI ON CENTRAL BOUGAINVILLE SEAT RECOUNT
By Aloysius Laukai

The Buka Police Station Commander, Senior Sergeant John Popui says that Buka Police are preparing for the recount of the Central Bougainville votes as ordered by the National Court recently.
Senior Sergeant made this known to New Dawn FM today saying that POLICE would want the supporters to remain calm and not to cause disturbance during and after the re-count.
He recalled past experiences in which supporters the main Buka/Arawa highway was blocked by candidate supporters at the Red river bridge.
The BSC said that he wants the people to remain calm and wait for the final result at the re-count.

Ends

10:08

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

POPUI ON CENTRAL BOUGAINVILLE SEAT RECOUNT
By Aloysius Laukai

The Buka Police Station Commander, Senior Sergeant John Popui says that Buka Police are preparing for the recount of the Central Bougainville votes as ordered by the National Court recently.
Senior Sergeant made this known to New Dawn FM today saying that POLICE would want the supporters to remain calm and not to cause disturbance during and after the re-count.
He recalled past experiences in which supporters the main Buka/Arawa highway was blocked by candidate supporters at the Red river bridge.
The BSC said that he wants the people to remain calm and wait for the final result at the re-count.

Ends

10:03

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

210218SITUATION TENSE ON THE BORDER BETWEEN SOLOMON ISLANDS AND BOUGAINVILLE
By Aloysius Laukai

Meanwhile, the situation on the border between Solomon islands and Bougainville is very tense after the 29 Bougainvilleans previously apprehended by Solomon Islands Police on Solomon islands waters escaped the Police compound last night.
According to Reports from Solomon Islands, they were apprehended but not arrested or charged.
According to a SIBC reporter, they got out of the Police compound last night and they have not located their whereabouts.

Ends

09:58

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"



29 Bougainvilleans apprehended for illegally entering Solomon waters

The Royal Solomon Islands Police Response Team has apprehended 29 Bougainvilleans today in the western province for allegedly entering the countrys border illegally.

Reports say, the men entered the countrys border Monday and were believed to be heading for Noro town in North New Georgia.

The men were travelling inside 3 boats and were intercepted by Patrol boat Auki at around 1pm Tuesday outside Vella La Vella Island.

They were transferred by the PRT with the assistance of Immigration Officials and were brought to Gizo town where they are now being kept under Police custody.

It is not clear why the men entered the country illegally, but communities in the western province believe the men were heading to Noro because of the recent death of a twenty year old boy believed to be part Bouganville and Shortlands, who died last month in the township, which is still under police investigations.

Meanwhile, Western Province Police Provincial Commander, Superintendent Mathias Lenialu refused to give further details regarding the incident.

He said the incident is now a national issue because the men entered the countrys waters illegally.

SIBC understands that no further charges were made, but police investigation is currently underway.

Ends

09:46

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"


UN in PNG Condemns Acts of Violence against Journalists

Port Moresby, 21 February 2018: The United Nations System in Papua New Guinea is concerned by the alleged attacks on journalists in Lae, Morobe province, last Friday and call upon authorities to undertake prompt and effective investigations into the matter.

A free, uncensored, and unhindered media is the cornerstone of a democratic society, and we stand against violence against the media, in any form, said UN Resident Coordinator in PNG, Gianluca Rampolla.

The media should be able to operate without fear or favour, and enjoy media freedom as a basic human right as enshrined in the Constitution of Papua New Guinea and the International Human Rights Conventions which PNG has ratified, said Mr Rampolla.

As an important enabler for civic participation and empowerment, the media plays a central role in advancing development and human rights.

The attack on the journalists in Lae occurs three months before World Media Freedom Day. World Media Freedom day is annually observed on 3 May, to defend the media from attacks on their independence and to pay tribute to journalists who have lost their lives in the exercise of their profession.




09:00

hunters Hill residents still waiting on government to clean up uranium contaminated land "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Hunters Hill residents wary of latest announcement on uranium contamination, ABC News, 20 Feb 18, By Jade Macmillan

Residents on Sydneys lower north shore have dismissed the Governments latest plans to clean up land contaminated by a uranium smelter more than hundred years ago as a hollow promise.

Property Minister Victor Dominello announced $30 million to remediate the waterfront land on Nelson Parade in Hunters Hill, the former site of the Radium Hill refinery, which closed in 1915.

The area was also occupied by a carbolic acid plant until the early 1900s and a tin smelter until the 1960s.

Residents have spent decades urging the Government to remove the affected soil, which the NSW Environment Protection Authority found it was contaminated with petroleum hydrocarbons, coal tar pitch, arsenic and lead.

Having this funding should give the community confidence that we are determined to remediate the site, Mr Dominello said, ahead of a public meeting of more than 200 residents on Tuesday night.

The Government is currently considering suitable disposal locations for the waste, and is in discussions with the Federal Government on the possibility of using the proposed National Radioactive Waste Management Facility earmarked for development in South Australia.

The minister did not provide a timeframe for the works and a site for the radioactive facility has not yet been selected.

Rosemary Manusu, 80, who has lived on Nelson Parade for more than 50 years, said she had little faith in the a...

01:14

Global sea level to rise by up to 1.2 metres despite Paris agreement, say scientists "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Global sea levels are set to rise dramatically, threatening the homes of some 100 million people, even if the strictest greenhouse gas emissions targets are met, according to a new study.

The research, compiled by climate scientists from a number of international institutions, analysed the long-term impacts of different emission levels and concluded oceans will rise by over one metre even if the world sticks to the Paris agreement.

Overall, the researchers estimated a global rise of between 0.7 and 1.2 metres adding that if emissions are not curbed as soon as possible it will be even greater.

More than 100 million people are currently thought to live within one metre of the high tide level.

The Paris agreement was signed by nearly 200 countries including the US under former president Barack Obama's administration in December 2015. Donald Trump has since begun the process of withdrawing the US from the deal.

It calls for emissions to peak as soon as possible before going into decline, in an effort to limit the increase in global average temperatures to well below 2C above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5C.

The new research lays out the consequences of delaying the action it specifies.

According to the analysis, for every five years this peak is delayed after 2020, an extra 20cm can be added to estimates for global sea-level rise.

Although the projections look far ahead to 2300, the scientists emphasised the dramatic impact short-term greenhouse gas emissions in coming decades would have on sea levels for centuries to come.

Our results show that there are quantifiable consequences of delaying action, said Dr Carl-Friedrich Schleussner, a researcher at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) and one of the studys co-authors.

For millions of people around the world living in coastal areas, every centimetre can make a huge difference to limit sea-level rise risks, immediate CO2 reduction is key."

The atmosphere can respond relatively quickly to changes in greenhouse gas emissions, meaning global surface temperatures can probably be stabilised or even reduced if drastic cuts are introduced.

However, the ocean is far slower in its response.

Man-made climate change has already pre-programmed a certain amount...

01:14

East Sepik governor dispatches police to arrest rogue miners "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Radio New Zealand | 21 February 2018

The Governor of Papua New Guineas East Sepik province has dispatched police to detain a company looking to mine without landowner approval.

Allan Bird, who was elected six months ago, said he was trying to improve the governance around resource extractive projects in his province.

He said his administration was ready to support landowners in any action they would like to take in protecting their traditional tribal land.

Two days ago we had a ship go up the Sepik river with all kinds of equipment to go and mine a gold mine somewhere up in Angoram, in a place called Keram LLG (Local Level Government area). The landowners came and complained.

Today I dispatched 15 police officers to actually go there and arrest these people and bring them to Wewak and we can figure out whats what.

Mr Bird said he checked with PNGs Mining Minister about the Keram mining concern who didnt know anything about it.

01:13

29 Bougainvilleans apprehended for illegally entering Solomon waters "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

The Royal Solomon Islands Police Response Team has apprehended  29 Bougainvilleans today in the western province for allegedly entering the countrys border illegally.

Reports say, the men entered the countrys border Monday and were believed to be heading for Noro town in North New Georgia.

The men were travelling inside 3 boats and were  intercepted by Patrol boat Auki at around 1pm Tuesday outside Vella La Vella Island.

They were transferred by the PRT with the assistance of Immigration Officials and were brought to Gizo town where they are now being kept under Police custody.

It is not clear why the men entered the country illegally, but communities in the western province believe the men were heading to Noro because of the recent death of a twenty year old boy believed to be part Bouganville and Shortlands, who died last month in the township, which is still under police investigations.

Meanwhile, Western Province Police Provincial Commander, Superintendent Mathias Lenialu refused to give further details regarding the incident.

He said the incident is now a national issue because the men entered the countrys waters illegally.

SIBC understands that no further charges were made, but police investigation is currently underway.

SOURCE: SIBC/PACNEWS

01:02

Leaders to focus on digital economy "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Sharing the benefits of growth and embracing the digital economy are key themes that have been discussed and will be discussed at the upcoming senior Asia-Pacific business leaders meeting.

But ABAC chair for 2018, David Toua said that growth is clearly essential but not a sufficient condition for secure and prosperous communities. At its first of four meetings for 2018, the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC) welcomed the forecasts for strong regional growth, noting the IMF prediction that Asia-Pacific GDP would expand by 5.4 per cent this year, far outstripping the rate of 2 per cent in advanced economies. We need to look closely at our economies policies to ensure that people can actually take advantage of the opportunities that growth brings. Harnessing inclusive opportunities is a key mantra for this year, Mr Toua said.

He said that a second big focus was the digital economy.

We have created a new working group to focus specifically on digital and innovation issues.

The digital economy is growing exponentially. We are seeing a surge of disruptive business models. Even in traditional sectors like agriculture and manufacturing, innovative technologies, digital services, fintech and e-commerce are now central.

Importantly, the digital economy provides a springboard for small business, women and other disadvantaged groups to take part in trade and connect around the region. But we cannot realise the full potential of a Digital Asia-Pacific without putting resources and energy into countering the digital divide that risks leaving the most vulnerable behind. In all economies, we also need to nurture a future-ready workforce. That means putting in place the right settings for digital infrastructure, skills and education, and region-wide digital business- friendly regulation, said Mr Toua.

ABAC members had welcomed the recent conclusion of the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership by 11 APEC economies, Mr Toua noted that the agreement was seen as one of the key pathways to an eventual integrated Free Trade Area of the Asia Pacific.

Other priorities discussed included improving connectivity; structural reform especially in the services sector; reducing trade and investment barriers; facilitating and creating opportunities for micro, small and medium enterprises; strengthening financial systems, and grappling with issues around sustainable growth such as food and energy security.

...

00:44

How the elite profit while a nation suffers their incompetence "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Port Moresby, a city where the elite profit while the rest suffer the consequences of their incompetence

PNG Exposed | 19 February 2018

Imagine a company that is in debt, heavily in debt and still racking up more losses.

Imagine a company that in 2016 alone lost over K354 million.

Imagine a company where the total liabilities exceed the total assets by more than K218 million.

Imagine that this is a company set up by the government to manage a nations interests in its abundant mineral resources.

Now imagine no more and say hello to Kumul Minerals Holdings Limited, formerly Petromin PNG Holdings Limited.

The figures above are from Kumul Minerals Holdings latest Annual Return, which is for the 2016 financial year.

How could a company that, according to Statute, is supposed to be the commercial enterprise that participates in mineral exploration, development, production, processing and marketing activities,on behalf of the State be...

00:25

Suspect in Food World Shooting in Port Moresby to be charged "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"


The suspect responsible for the shooting of a foreign security personnel at the Boroko Food World Supermarket in Gordons Port Moresby last Thursday will be charged for willful murder and attempted murder, according to NCD's top cop Perou N'Dranou.


NCD Metropolitan Superintendent Perou N'Dranou said the suspect will be charged with one count of willful murder and two counts of attempted murder while investigations advance into the motive of the shooting.

Mr. N'Dranou however expressed his disappointment at a video footage leaked on social media saying the footage may disrupt police investigations into the incident.

Mr. NDranou described the video leaked on social Media (FB) as unethical and wrong.

The video posted is unethical and wrong and is against the law for me to use, and thats were this will disrupt investigations because it will be a public document once it reaches court, said NDranou.

NDranou said they have advanced investigations into the incident after receiving reports from the Philippines embassy.

He added that police cannot pre-empt the motive behind the incident but will await investigations to take its process to determine the real cause of the shooting. PNGFM/PNG Today

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Tuesday, 20 February

21:45

"LOVE TRIANGLE GONE WRONG" "Susan Merrell moving on from Belden Namah to Peter O'Neill to Powes Parkop". "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

By Sonja Barry Ramoi
'The woman Papua New Guineans love to hate', who was a friend who became a foe after I told her off about a particularly rude and pretty much inexcusable comment she made about Belden Namah in 2013, has been deported from Papua New Guinea.
Susan Merrell - aka Ferrell Merrell, aka Floozy Doozy Suzy (or however which way she wants to spell it) - is so far up herself that she must be off her rocker to blame the Prime Minister for her deportation, and also to mention me in her post today.
Her deportation is not the PM's doing, and it also had absolutely nothing to do with me.
Yes I did report her to the Judiciary (possibly in 2015) for certain comments of hers which I found contemptuous, and I believe that I recommended that she be blacklisted. However I am certainly not the only person who has recommended in the past that she be blacklisted.
As for her official surname (not Merrell) being flagged, I have known about her official surname for years and I am sure, especially since I knew what name she travels on, that other people from PNG would also have known.
I have not yet contacted the Chief Immigration Officer Solomon Kantha to confirm the reason why she was deported.
It appears however according to a copy of a post by Susan Merrell which was sent to me (earlier tonight), that she did not fill out her visa application form upon arrival correctly, and therefore it seems that she did not disclose to Immigration the true purpose of her visit and thats why she was told to leave PNG.
...

21:26

THE PNG DEFENCE FORCE WHITE PAPER & THE BLUE PRINT "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

by Eragairma Yal

I don't know if our Papua New Guinea Defence Force has a Blue Print.

PNG has obtained the Right to Self-Rule in 1973 as a pre-qualification to gaining independence in 1975, 16th September.

43yrs on and I have just learned one fundamental fact that our PNG Defense Force has still been operating as the Eighth Division under the Australian Defense Force Military. The fact is we have not gained Military Independence. We are an Eighth Element or Division similar to an Infantry under the Australian Defence Force Military.

One thing that baffles me is that the Australian Defense Force knowing very well that we are the Eighth Division operating under the ADF Military, why can't they develop our Defense Force into a full pledge Military Force carrying Land, Air and Sea Elements with complete state of the art equipment setup and logistics support with routine modern training as a requirement?

Whatever arrangements they may have had in the past that lead us to this stage, I write to challenge the PNGDF Brigadier General and the government of the day that we must have our own Blue Print for our Military that must lead us into attaining Militarily Independence.

I can remember the announcement of our Defence White Paper some time ago but what was it about? And what developments did we achieve as in the three elements of the Defence Force? What did our soldiers and paramilitary officers gain as in training and personal empowerment?

Our own BLUEPRINT must spell out the establishment of our military components, divisions, infantries, units and paramilitary forces etc.

Our trained Human Resources as in Cadets and Privates are sitting idle in the military barracks basically waiting for their pay packets, SoE callouts, and their eventual retrenchment cheque.

We need to use them in our circular workforces in the public service sector. While we already have some specialists trained as engineers, doctors, nurses, teachers, CHWs, lawyers, etc we ought to increase the training in the different disciplines and deploy them on secondment arrangements to serve everywhere in the country.

We need to use our trained human resource effectively to alleviate the shortfall in our workforce to develop our country.

I regret to see that we have some highly skille...

20:48

SABL petition anniversary marks PNG's greatest ever scandal "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

February 21st is the first anniversary of the presentation of a 10,000 signature petition to the Department of Lands demanding the cancellation of the SABL leases. 2018, also marks five-years since the SABL Commission of Inquiry exposed the full extent of the illegal land grab, which affects more than 10% of the whole country.

But despite repeated promises from the ONeill government to cancel the leases, stretching back to 2013, almost nothing has been done. 

ACT NOW! believes the governments response to the illegal SABL land grab is the greatest scandal this country has ever seen. 

Even the brave landowners who have struggled through the courts to have leases declared illegal, without any help or support from the government, or have stood up and defied the logging companies despite attacks from the police, still have foreign companies occupying their soil.

A list released two weeks ago by the Lands Department revealed that of 75 SABL leases examined in the Commission of Inquiry, only 10 have been cancelled and 5 of those were on the direction of the courts and four voluntarily surrendered.

Meanwhile, as the government delays get ever longer, most of the SABL files have disappeared from the Department of Lands.

Fifty thousand square kilometres of land, more than 10% of the entire nation given away illegally yet the government does almost nothing to undo the wrong and indeed is still allowing logging companies to plunder the forests.

With APEC leaders now preparing to visit PNG, the SABL land grab is a huge embarrassment for the nation.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights slammed the PNG government over its failure to protect its own citizens during his visit two-weeks ago, saying many communities have been forcibly evicted from their homes, often reportedly violently, with impunity and allegedly sometimes with the complicity of local police.

It seems the whole w...

20:00

Too late for PNG & its fragile & exploitable vulnerabilities "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Muse Mohammed PhotographyCHRIS OVERLAND

ADELAIDE - Sadly, I believe Phil Fitzpatrick's analysis of the current situation in Papua New Guinea is accurate.

Worse still, I now think that it is too late to prevent PNG's inevitable spiral into some form of authoritarian state or, possibly, an anarchical collapse into a number of smaller, competing mini-states. The latter outcome would be more broadly consistent with its pre-colonial history.

There are many reasons for this decline but the overriding one is that PNGs traditional cultures are not really conducive to the establishment and maintenance of a viable democratic state.

PNG cultures are communalist in nature but do not have underlying governance structures that provide a solid foundation for democratic institutions.

They are, in essence, anarchical, and profoundly inconsistent with the acceptance or even imposition of any form of central authority except by force and coercion.

PNG is not alone in this. Even so-called mature democracies rely, at bottom, upon the imposition and maintenance of state authority by means of a centrally controlled, enforceable legal framework.

The mere existence of relatively large and, very often, heavily armed Police forces is mute testimony to the fact that even the most ostensibly modern and socially unified societies are sustainable only through the use of various sanctions to impose order upon an often fractious citizenry.

Events like the London riots of 2011 come as such a tremendous shock because we all cling to the comforting illusion that our societies are fundamentally self-regulating. They are not and, in fact, never have been.

In truth, we citizens of the mature democracies have merely been allowed to participate in a governance process which, in practice, frequently continues to favour various influential elites over and above the broader public interest.

This is why organisations like the National Rifle Association in the USA can continue to exert the influence they do despite the painfully obvious necessity to undertake major reforms to that country's gun laws.

People like Noam Chomsky have pointed out how the mass media has become complicit in the...

19:00

South Pacific looks to China as West cuts aid & turns away "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Papua New Guinea Mine WatchALAN BOYD | Asia Times

HONG KONG - China is quietly filling the breach as traditional Western donors cut back on their aid pledges to the South Pacific.

And it seems many of the struggling island nations on the receiving end of Chinas largesse couldnt be happier with the shifting currents.

Last month, Australias international development minister, Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, scathingly attacked Beijings aid program in the region, accusing it of funding roads to nowhere and useless buildings.

We want to ensure that the infrastructure that you do build is actually productive and is actually going to give some economic benefit or some sort of health benefit, she said.

Foreign minister Julie Bishop was more diplomatic, saying that Australia welcomes investment in developing nations in the Pacific that supports sustainable economic growth, and which does not impose onerous debt burdens on regional governments.

Yet there is concern that Australia and its Western allies may be ceding their traditional leadership role in the South Pacific due to a combination of aid cutbacks and increasing Chinese interest in the dozen or so nations in the region.

According to the Lowy Institute, an Australian research outfit, China extended about US$209 million of aid annually to nine Pacific countries Fiji, Timor Leste, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Tonga, Niue, Cook Islands, Vanuatu and the Federated States of Micronesia in 2006-16.

Canberra gives about US$870 million a year, or 60% of all global aid sent to the Pacific. New Zealand gives US$235 million and the United States US$221 million. But China will likely soon become the second biggest source of aid, as New Zealand and the US are both reducing their aid in real terms.

US President Donald Trumps administration reportedly plans to slash US assistance by as much as one-third this year, with East Asia and the Pacific receiving 41.4% less. Assuming the policy is implemented, Timor Leste, Micronesia and the Marshall Islands will lose their entire aid and Papua New Guinea 66.4%.

New Zealands foreign minister Winston Peters said in early February that his countrys aid program has been under-funded for nine years and has slipped to 0.23% of gross national income, against an average of 0.4% for Organisation...

13:09

Australian woman hospitalised after vicious attack during burglary in Tonga "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Tonga Police. Photo/Kalino Lt
An Australian woman has been taken to hospital after a vicious assault in Fhefa, Tongatapu yesterday Sunday 18.

The suspects were still at large.

Police said two men entered the house where the woman and her husband lived.

They allegedly hit the womans head with a rock. The attack was interrupted by the husband who arrived back home to find his wife had been brutally attacked.

The intruders took off with two liquor bottles, a Police spokesperson told Kaniva News.

Nukunuku Police arrived at the scene and took the woman to hospital, Police said.

Police believed they knew the suspects and they were still searching for them.

Police said claims on Facebook that the woman was a member of the Australian Humanitarian and Relief assistance teams who arrived in Tonga after tropical cyclone Gita, was incorrect.

Kaniva News

13:05

Tongan farmers hit hard by Cyclone Gita "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

A week ago, Tongans were bracing themselves for what was to be the most destructive cyclone in the island's history.

But amid concerns around health and housing, officials now fear for the country's agricultural sector, which took a massive hit during the storm.

David Soaki has farmed his land since the 1980s, growing watermelon, squash and peanuts. He lost 80 percent of his crops - and thousands of dollars - when Cyclone Gita passed through. 

He told Newshub the loss was very, very bad.

I think it will take six months to recover because we will have to replant, and it'll take another three months for harvesting.

Soaki has hired children from the evacuation centre his family are living in. They've been tasked with collecting the watermelons that haven't gone rotten, and taking them to the market in the hopes of making some money.

Some 80 percent of Tongan households are involved in agriculture, and it remains a key driver of the economy. When Cyclone Gita passed through earlier this week, it wiped out crop farms right across the country.

Farmers will take a long time to bounce back - a concern also shared by the national emergency management office.

We're hoping that we can buy some of this food for these people which will give them some money to continue on with rebuilding their farms, Graham Kenna told Newshub. 

Soaki is hoping for a change of fortune.

[I'm] very worried because I have watermelon I'm supposed to be harvesting, but now it's rotten because of a lot of rain, and I will see what I can do just to cover the costs.

Almost a week on from the cyclone, power is starting to be restored to parts of Nuku'alofa and the town water supply is running once again.

But while progress is being made on the streets of the capital, it's going to be a long time before the people of Tonga get their lives back to normal.

SOURCE: NEWSHUB/PACNEWS

13:04

South Pacific looks to China as West turns away "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

By Alan Boyd

China is quietly filling the breach as traditional Western donors cut back on their aid pledges to the South Pacific. And it seems many of the struggling island nations on the receiving end of Chinas largesse couldnt be happier with the shifting currents.

Last month, Australias International Development Minister Concetta Fierravanti-Wells scathingly attacked Beijings aid program in the region, accusing it of funding roads to nowhere and useless buildings.

We want to ensure that the infrastructure that you do build is actually productive and is actually going to give some economic benefit or some sort of health benefit, she said.

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop was more diplomatic, saying that Australia welcomes investment in developing nations in the Pacific that supports sustainable economic growth, and which does not impose onerous debt burdens on regional governments.

Yet there is concern that Australia and its Western allies may be ceding their traditional leadership role in the South Pacific due to a combination of aid cutbacks and increasing Chinese interest in the dozen or so nations in the region.

According to the Lowy Institute, an Australian research outfit, China extended about US$209 million of aid annually to nine Pacific countries Fiji, Timor Leste, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Tonga, Niue, Cook Islands, Vanuatu and the Federated States of Micronesia in 2006-2016.

Canberra gives about US$870 million a year, or 60% of all global aid sent to the Pacific. New Zealand gives US$235 million and the United States US$221 million. But China will likely soon become the second biggest source of aid, as New Zealand and the US are both reducing their aid in real terms.

US President Donald Trumps administration reportedly plans to slash US assistance by as much as one-third this year, with East Asia and the Pacific receiving 41.4% less. Assuming the policy is implemented, Timor Leste, Micronesia and the Marshall Islands will lose their entire aid and Papua New Guinea 66.4%.

New Zealands Foreign Minister Winston Peters said in early February that his countrys aid program has been under-funded for nine years and has slipped to 0.23% of gross national income, against an average of 0.4% for Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) members. It is being reviewed, but prospects for a sharp boost in Pacific aid are slim.

...

09:23

Singirok on Gun Control in Papua New Guinea "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Chairman of the Guns Control Committee former Commander of the PNG Defence Force Major-General (retired) Jerry Singirok said the government needs to invest heavily on border security in Papua New Guinea.

Mr Singirok was the Chairman of the Guns Control Committee set up in 2005 to come up with recommendation to address issues on guns violence in the country.

Two hundred and forty-four recommendations were made by the guns committee however nothing been done to addressed the recommendations by the Government.

Mr Singirok said stringent control measures should be taken by the government at entry points such as our borders to monitor and curb the entry of these deadly weapons.

Mr Singirok was speaking on the NBC's Morning- Tru show today, Tuesday the 20th of February, 2018.

"The other biggest issue that I need to tell the public is that we have a border security problem.

The government has not invested much in security forces to give them the ability to ensure that the border control is enforced, for example, at Wutung, Batas the Indonesian check point is the weakest, weakest point.

NBC News

08:21

Open letter to Morobe Governor Ginson Saonu about assault on journalist "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

LN_Ginson-Soanu_00Dear Governor Ginson Saonu,

Your Project Officer who claims to be the Chief of Staff  showed that he was incapable of mature thought. He is a joke.

In short, em bagarapim name blo yu when he assaulted Post Courier Journalist, Frankiy Kapin.

We know that your people have been trying your hardest to have the charges dropped.  Parties associated with your office tried to bribe the journalist. They included a LLG president.

Is that how Governor Ginson Saonu operates?  If not, tell them to stop.

Your Project Officer was boastful  and stupid.  He said things that divide and not unite Morobeans.  In case you did not hear, here are Steven Botings claims:

  • The office of the Governor has police officers that he controls.
  • Former Governor, Kelly Naru and Deputy Governor, Judas Nalau bribe journalists
  • And that journalists are on Kelly Narus payroll.

This is a transcript of what he said on Saturday.

MIPLA NO HAMAMAS LO RIPOTA YA. MIPLA AWONG MAHN YA. SAMPLA SAMTING EM SA RIPOTIM LO NIUS PEPA YA. EM NO SA HARIM GUT STORY NA EM SA RIPOTIMMIPLA BELHAT NA STAP.

 

EM NO NIU AILAN, FUCK EM MOR...

06:07

Increase observers on boats : Basil "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Papua New Guinea Communication and Information Technology and Energy Minister Sam Basil suggests the National Fisheries Authority (NFA) increase the number of observers onboard tuna fishing vessels from one to two.

Basil told Parliament on Friday that the current arrangement of placing only one observer on a vessel remained a concern.

I support the concerns raised by the governor for East Sepik regarding the disappearance of observers (four), he said.

This is a serious issue right now and will be an ongoing issue.

Basil said the observers were exposed to many things.

The boat that they were on, these foreign fishing vessels, have licences that come with certain conditions and there are laws governing their operations, he said.

Sometimes these foreign vessels have bi-catches, catching some of the fish species and marine animals that are not allowed in their licence.

Sometimes, they do transhipment on the high seas without NFA knowledge.

Basil said for an observer to fight against trans-shipment, it was a matter of some millions of dollars.
You can see the danger he (observer) is in.

Thats why I think it is important that we need to pay serious attention to it (observer safety) immediately and we must put at least two observers on board a foreign fishing vessel..

SOURCE: THE NATIONAL/PACNEWS

05:04

People moves: United Nations, KPMG "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

A new Country Representative for the UN in PNG, Senior Taxation appointment at KPMG

The new United Nations Resident Coordinator for PNG is Gianluca Rampolla, replacing Roy Trivedy, who has held the post since November, 2013. Prior to his appointment as the highest-ranking UN Official in PNG, Rampolla served in several UN field assignments in Africa, Europe and the UNs headquarters in New York.

***

Karen McEntee has been appointed the new head of KPMGs Taxation Service line in Papua New Guinea. She began her career 20 years ago with KPMG in Ireland.

The post People moves: United Nations, KPMG appeared first on Business Advantage PNG.

04:47

In brief: Public debt stands at 31.9 per cent of GDP, and other business stories "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Total public debt stands at K23.5 billion, review of gun licences for private security firms likely, and Peoples Micro Bank to be commercialised later this year. Your weekly digest of the latest business news.

Total public debt stands at K23.5 billion as at the end of 2017 representing 31.9 per cent of gross domestic product, according to the 2017 final budget outcome tabled in Parliament by Treasury Minister Charles Abel. The figure is an increase of K1.6 billion or 7.4 per cent over 2016 levels. He said the 2017 outcome showed total revenue and grants at K11.2 billion and total expenditure and net lending at K12.9 billion, adding: This translates to a budget deficit of K1.7 billion or 2.3 per cent of GDP.

***

Police Minister Jelta Wong has indicated the government is likely to review firearm licences for private security firms in PNG, after a public shootout in a busy supermarket in Port Moresby last week involving two foreign security guards. Wong said police will now move in to confiscate all firearms owned by the security firm.

***

The NDBs Moses Liu.

The Managing Director of the National Development Bank, Moses Liu, has reportedly told employees that he expects the Peoples Micro Bank Limited to be a fully fledged commercial bank this year. He also said a discussion on commercialising the NDB was ruled out in favour of commercialising the PMB.

***

Bougainville Copper Ltd is seeking a judicial review of the Bougainville Governments moratorium on mining at...

03:36

Vanuatu tourism executives see co-operation with Papua New Guinea and Fiji as the way to capture the China market "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Vanuatu tourism officials want a joint approach with Papua New Guinea and Fiji to develop the lucrative inbound Chinese tourism market. With Vanuatu still recovering from the effects of 2013s Cyclone Pam, Business Advantage PNG asks key industry figures how the Melanesian country is preparing to capture the China market.

The new Ramada Resort in Port Vila. Source: Ramada

We are looking at the China market, like everyone else is, says George Iapson, Chair of the Vanuatu Investment Promotion Authority. Were hoping to get flights directly from mainland China, either Southern China or Shanghai.

We need to piggyback on the Air Niugini move into the Chinese route development [PNGs national airline is scheduled to start flying to Shanghai later this year] and theres a real possibility we can move into the Asia market through PNG. That process has started.

...

03:36

Five questions for: James Movick, Director-General, Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Control of foreign fishing vessels in international waters is the biggest threat to the South Pacific tuna industry, according to James Movick, Director-General, Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency. He tells Business Advantage PNG that plans to increase aerial surveillance will help detect illegal fishing.

Business Advantage PNG (BAPNG): How would you describe the state of the tuna fishing industry in the South Pacific?

Forum Fisheries Agencys James Movick warns the tuna industry is at risk.

James Movick (JM): Tuna is by far the biggest fishery in terms of catches and catch values for the region. The good news is that all of the four major tuna stocksskipjack, yellowfin, albacore and bigeyeare being fished sustainably.

None of the main stocks, according to the scientists, is being overfished.

The bad news is that longline fisheries, which mainly target high value tuna for sashimi, are facing difficult economic conditions and falling catch rates. This has had a very negative impact on many domestic fishing companies in Pacific Island countries.

BAPNG: Whats the biggest influence in determining the state of the industry?

JM: Maintaining the sustainability of the stocks is obviously the key to securing a fishery that will continue to provide benefits for Pacific Island people into the future and is the top priority of FFA and its member countries.

However, biological sustainability is not always enough to ensure a viable fishing industry; this depends on catch rates, global tuna prices, fuel costs etc.

At the moment, the purse seine fishery is generally profitable; the longline fishery is a lot less viable.

The biggest single threat to the tuna fishery is the lack of control of mainly foreign vessels operating on the high seas.

When fishing in our 200-mile Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs), they are subject to regulation and a robust fishery management regime;...

03:05

Releasing customary land for housing essential as state land runs out, says NRI "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

House prices still remain out of reach for most Port Moresby residents, according to a report by Papua New Guineas National Research Institute. It says that changing the approach to customary land has become necessary because state land is running out.

Sales of property in Port Moresby. Source: NRI

Although house sales and rent prices have decreased, they are still beyond the reach of most Port Moresby residents because the decrease is not proportional to the increase during the construction phase of the PNG LNG project, according to the report, which was authored by Eugene Ezebilo, Program Leader of the Property Development Program at the National Research Institute (NRI).

Currently, many houses are vacant in the historical medium-income areas and the Central Business District (CBD). Most residents cannot afford to buy or rent houses there and have moved to low-income areas such as Gerehu, which is now booming in real estate activities.

With state land almost exhausted, the attention has now shifted to customary land.

Ezebilo argues that there should be more effort by the government to unlock secure customary land for development.

Access to customary land has been a long-standing issue in PNG and requires urgent attention. With state land almost exhausted, the attention has now shifted to customary land.

Legislative changes?

...

01:38

The PNG 100 CEO Survey 2018: Papua New Guineas chief executives remain optimistic "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Business Advantages PNG 100 CEO Survey of chief executives in Papua New Guineas biggest companies has found that profit expectations were only partly met last year, but there are signs of growing confidence in 2018.

This is the seventh year that Business Advantage PNG has run the PNG 100 CEO Surveyour exclusive survey of the executives who run PNGs largest companies.

Each year, the survey aims to reveal current levels of business confidence by asking CEOs about their anticipated profit levels and expectations for investment and recruitment in the year ahead2018. We also ask them to rank the key issues they face in their business.

Profit performance in 2017 versus expectations. Source: PNG 100 CEO Survey/Business Advantage International

Profits patchy

Twelve months ago, when we asked the CEOs what their profit expectations were for 2017, they were mostly optimistic...

00:07

Nautilus Minerals says it doesnt know very much at all "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

According to Nautilus Minerals, although it has successfully tested its mining machines in a giant puddle, there is an awful lot it does NOT know about its proposed Solwara 1, experimental seabed mine in Papua New Guinea.

Indeed, it is hard to find anything the company does know with any certainty.

Nautilus Minerals admits it does not know:

1. If its mining machines will work on the seafloor

Nautilus says there are risks relating to the performance of the Seafloor Production Tools include the risk of equipment failing to perform to design specifications when operated at the Solwara 1 Project, as the machines have not yet been tested at depths similar to depths present at the Solwara 1 Project.

2. If it can raise the money it needs to even start mining

The risks related...

Monday, 19 February

22:26

Why history and art argue against a total ivory ban "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Guardian

Ivory tells the history of the world it must never be banned

Jonathan Jones

UK legislation to ban ivory products from across history would criminalise some of the greatest art the world has seen. We need reason, not passion, in the fight against poaching

Thu 16 Feb 2017 16.18 GMT

Last modified on Wed 14 Feb 2018 17.16 GMT

A delicate and subtle artistic masterpiece front cover plaques from the Lorsch Gospels

The cover of the Lorsch Gospels is one of the most unexpected beauties in any of our museums. This yellowish-white carving comes from the depths of the dark ages, when Europe was supposedly a primitive and barbaric place yet it is a delicate and subtle artistic masterpiece.

It was made in Aachen, Germany, in about 810 to protect a splendid illuminated manuscript produced at the court of the Emperor Charlemagne. Its harmonious design, symmetrical arches, putti and robed figures cleverly emulate the lost splendour of ancient Rome a splendour Charlemagne longed to restore. In the lowest panel, the infant Christ lies in a manger watched over by an ox and ass in one of the earliest nativity scenes in art. This tender portrayal has a loving humanity that communicates directly with us across the centuries.

Prince William charity urges UK to back ivory trade ban

Read more

And it could become illegal in Britain. Under new rules being seriously considered by the government, if a work of this age and quality came on to the market, no British museum or private collector would be allowed to buy it. How long will it be, if this legislation is introduced, before campaigners take the next logical step and call for treasures such as the Lorsch Gospels cover to be taken off display, or even destroyed, like the obscenities they supposedly are?

For this early medieval wonder was carved from elephant ivory. Under new rules, it is illegal in Britain to trade in ivory objects made since 1947, a totally proper and necessary measure against the modern ivory trade and its incitement of ivory poaching. Yet campaigners including the World Wildlife Fund, Tusk and the Duke of Cambridge insist that doesnt go far enough. Illegal ivory traders can forge pre-1947 antiques, they claim, in calling for a total ban on all trade in ivory objects. Unbelievably,...

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