December 31, 2015

Port Moresby residents welcome 2016 in style

Port Moresby residents welcome 2016 in style

 The city of Port Moresby was illuminated with magnificent display of fireworks last night   as residents  farewelled 2015 and welcome new year 2016. 

The Lamana Gold Club as usually treated the residents with magnificent  display of  fireworks which coloured the skies of the city.  Party goers also danced their way into the New Year without any disruptions. No incidents were reported as of last night.

Meanwhile Bougainville farewelled  2015 and welcomed 2016 one hour earlier than other Provinces in Papua New Guinea last night.

This is because Bougainville started following the Bougainville Standard Time approved by the Bougainville House of Representatives in 2014.
PNG Defence Force soldiers pull out of Hela Province

PNG Defence Force soldiers pull out of Hela Province

The Papua New Guinea Defence Force  has withdrawn a platoon serving in Hela after two of its members were recently shot to death by locals, Hela police commander Michael Welly says.

The soldiers have been brought back to their base at the Murray Barracks in Port Moresby.
Military helicopters transported the 11-man platoon (originally 13) which was escorted by soldiers from a unit at the Goldie River Barracks.

They will be investigated by the military for the death of their comrades and why they elected to stay in Hela after their posting at Komo Airport had ended.
Welly said there were no soldiers manning the facilities allocated for the military at the newly-built Komo Airport. 

He said the two soldiers – one from New Ireland and one from Eastern Highlands – were killed by locals.
“The soldiers were part of a platoon who came across a fight between two tribes. As the fighting was within the vicinity of their camp, the soldiers intervened to stop the fighting from spreading,” he said.
“During the negotiation process, the three soldiers left and drove back to their camp. They disturbed a haus krai for a man killed in the tribal fight. The mourners, armed with axes and thinking that they were from the other tribe, killed one and seriously wounding another (who later died at the Tari hospital). The third escaped.”

Acting Defence Force Chief-of-Staff Raymond Numa said the platoon was supposed to have returned to Port Moresby four months ago after the completion of their nine-month deployment. The National/ONE PNG
 Bougainville farewells 2015 one hour early

Bougainville farewells 2015 one hour early

Bougainville farewelled  2015 and welcomed 2016 one hour earlier than other Provinces in Papua New Guinea last night.

This is because Bougainville started following the Bougainville Standard Time approved by the Bougainville House of Representatives in 2014.

Bougainville is one hour ahead of Papua New Guinea.

Meanwhile the Commander for the North Bougainville Police, Inspector SPENCER AILI is appealing again to the people of North Bougainville to celebrate the New Year peacefully with their families.

Inspector AILI said that the people of North Bougainville must not see the repeat of the accidents that occurred during the Christmas celebrations.

He said Police will continue to appeal to the people to make sure they celebrate the start of the new year peacefully.

Buka Market has too much food this Christmas

Buka Market has too much food this Christmas

Despite the EL NINO predicted for PNG and the Pacific, Buka and other Bougainville Fresh Food markets have had surplus food for sale this Christmas.

Local radio station New Dawn FM  says  markets are filled with surplus fresh food and  the sellers  could not sell everything.

Catherin Rani one local farmer said the women were happy that they were raising more money this festive season unlike previous years.

She said that the women saw extra cash from their fresh food sales and are happy that Bougainville can still produce enough food to supply Buka town and the nearby villages.


Strong wind and flood warning issued for most of Fiji

Strong wind and flood warning issued for most of Fiji

The Fiji Meteorology Office says Fiji is experiencing strong winds and heavy rain because of a tropical depression which lies slow moving over the country.

A strong wind warning is in force for eastern Viti Levu, Vanua Levu, Taveuni and nearby smaller islands, Lau and Lomaiviti group.

Residents can expect strong winds with average speed of 45km/hr gusting to 65km/hr over Eastern Viti Levu, Vanua Levu, Taveuni and nearby smaller islands, Yasawa and Mamanuca Group with rough to very rough seas.

There will also be periods of rain, heavy at times and few thunderstorms over eastern and northern Viti Levu, Vanua Levu, Taveuni and nearby smaller islands, Yasawa and Mamanuca group.

A heavy rain warning is also in force for eastern and northern Viti Levu, Vanua Levu, Taveuni and nearby smaller islands, Yasawa and Mamanuca group.

A flood warning has also been issued by the Met Office for the low lying areas and areas adjacent to Wailotua station and areas downstream of Wainibuka River in the Eastern part of the main island of Viti Levu.

Water level at Wailotua was 5.35m at 4.45am today which is 1.85m above warning level and is increasing.

A flood warning is also in force for the low lying areas and areas adjacent to Nayavu station and areas downstream from Wainibuka River.

A flood alert is in force for the low lying areas and adjacent to Rakiraki town and areas downstream of Rakiraki town in northwestern Viti Levu.

Meanwhile, Tropical Cyclone Ula which has intensified and has developed in a category 3 system.

It was located 330km south east of Apia and is moving west south west at 11km per hour.

Fiji Meteorology Office Director Ravind Kumar says the estimated winds around the center of Ula are about 65 knots and it is expected to maintain a west south west track for the next 24 to 48 hours.

He says on the projected path, it is expected to lie 520km east of Lakeba in Lau in Fiji at 4am tomorrow.

Kumar says the system is expected to weaken as it approaches Fiji group and enter Fiji waters as a category 2 system early tomorrow morning.

Source: fijivillage
IMF launches Video contest

IMF launches Video contest

THE International Monetary Fund (IMF) has launched the 2016 Advancing Asia: Investing for the Future Youth Video Contest.

The competition—to be held in conjunction with the Advancing Asia conference, will take place in New Delhi, India, on March 11–13, 2016, seeks videos from young business minded videographers of all abilities capturing through their own lenses the realities, challenges, and interesting stories of the Asia-Pacific region.

Papua New Guinea is among other countries that fall in that category where the contest is open to.

Also eligible are citizens of Australia, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, China, Fiji, Hong Kong SAR, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kiribati, Korea, Lao PDR, Macao SAR, Malaysia, Maldives, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, New Zealand, Palau, Philippines, Samoa, Singapore, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, and Vietnam.

IMF office in releasing the statement on their media press site had advised that the contest is open to persons between the ages 18–30 and will accept submissions from December 29, 2015 to January 26, 2016.

The public voting through social media will begin when the videos are submitted and will end on February 3, 2016.

The top 10 finalists from this round will be evaluated by a panel of judges. The selection will be based on originality, technical excellence and artistic merit.

Two winners will be announced on February 15, 2016, on the website. Winners will receive a three-day trip to New Delhi to attend the business conference.

Full contest details can be found at

Meanwhile the Advancing Asia conference, co-sponsored by the government of India and the IMF, will take stock of the Asia-Pacific region’s economic performance and the policy challenges that will have a great bearing on social and economic progress.

Key issues to be addressed at the conference will include: growth models; income inequality, demographic change, and gender; infrastructure investment; climate change; managing capital flows; and financial inclusion.

Participants will include government ministers and central bank governors, business executives, academics, and civil society leaders.

Keynote speakers will include Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India and IMF managing director Christine Lagarde.
Russia among  6 other countries to set up missions in PNG

Russia among 6 other countries to set up missions in PNG

FOREIGN resident missions in Papua New Guinea will increase in the New Year with many countries opting to appoint consuls and honorary consuls.

Government officials said it was despite the negative perspectives of Papua New Guinea facing economic problems.

Currently, the PNG Foreign Office is also filling in some of its vacant offices abroad – one of which is Ambassador Lucy Begari who is set to take up the PNG office in Fiji.

Foreign missions to PNG now stand at 30, including embassies and consulates.

Officials said the increase in missions was being spurred by PNG preparing to host its biggest international meet – the 2018 APEC meeting.

While preparations are taking place, six top APEC nations are seriously considering setting up missions starting next year, a matter they have already communicated with the Government.

APEC comprises 21-member economies that include Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, the Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and the United States of America.

Out of these, 15 already have representation in PNG and they are Australia, Canada, Chile, China, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and the United States of America.

Russia, Peru, Mexico, Hong Kong and Brunei Darussalam are currently negotiating with PNG to set up and prepare for their leaders meet in 2018. An added impetus to the growing interest in PNG is its potential economic growth, specifically from the first US$19 billion PNG LNG Project, and the possible second LNG and condensate project involving the French major Total SA, Inter Oil and Oil Search.

Canada’s Talisman Energy is hopeful it can bring together stranded gas fields in Western Province for a third LNG venture.

This also includes the petrochemical project to kick start in the New Year. 

Post Courier/ ONE PNG 

Mobile Phone company Bmobile-Vodafone announces free calls on New Year's Day

Mobile Phone company Bmobile-Vodafone announces free calls on New Year's Day

On people’s demand, bmobile-vodafone announced that all calls between bmobile-vodafone numbers will not be charged on New Year’s day ie 1 January 2016. This means if you have a bmobile-vodafone number, you can use that number to call any other bmobile-vodafone number in PNG for free this Christmas.
Apart from this special promotion, bmobile-vodafone also has a range of affordable voice and data plans to help you communicate with your loved ones in PNG and outside at the
most affordable rates.

Chief Marketing Officer – bmobile-vodafone, Parag Panjwani said “We received an overwhelming response to our gesture of offering free calls on Christmas, that’s when we decided to  extend the same offer on New Year’s day as well to ensure that people are able to wish their friends, family and all wontoks without worrying about the cost.”

Customers can find more details about the above promotion on the bmobile-vodafone website or call
1555 for existing customer or 76003555 from another network
or send an email to

PNG Opposition resists ELK Antelope LNG projects

PNG Opposition resists ELK Antelope LNG projects

PORT MORESBY: The government’s swift push for the development of the country’s second Total-led LNG project Elk Antelope in Gulf has not gone well with the Opposition.
Its Leader Don Pomb Polye said the state’s obligations, especially the infrastructure developments, and law and order issues among others were still outstanding at the time when the company announced the start of drilling for the Antelope appraisal well.
“I hope the people of Gulf won’t share the same experiences as their neighbors the people of Hela.
“As I am speaking my fellow Hela landowners and others from the other four project-impacted provinces are still up for their long-awaited royalties amongst reports of rise in law and order problems and outstanding infrastructure developments,” he said.
He has called on the Prime Minister and his Petroleum and Energy minister to learn lessons from the first LNG projects to avoid any other similar encounters when the second one comes into full operation.
“It is not only a shame for the Prime Minister to quickly push for the development of the project when the landowner issues of the first project are still unresolved.
“It is also a slap in the face of the landowners and other Papua New Guineans for someone who was responsible for mortgaging the first fruits of the first LNG project in the UBS loan,” a concerned Polye said.
Mr Polye said the alternative government would encourage maximization of the local or national content in such projects whilst simultaneously considering business interest of investors and stakeholders.
“When we are in government, we will review the taxation, royalty and benefit regimes to create a better business environment for all parties.
“In our new Mining and Petroleum regime, we believe that there is a need for the current equity arrangement to be changed to a production-sharing of mine business in PNG.
Brushing aside sugarcoat remarks by the Prime Minister, saying employment and other business promises by the project, the Opposition Leader said ‘let us try empower our landowners to do bigger businesses like in the production sector.’
“Our people are smart so let us do away with traditional employments like security, cleaning and other technical works and empower our people to participate in the production-sharing businesses to ensure they own the economy,” said Mr Polye.
He said the government had exhausted all the sources of revenues to revamp the country’s economic disaster and that it was being pushed hastily at the expense of the people’s welfare.
“The government is doing this with the hope of reviving the economy with huge capital inflows from the project at the suffering of their welfare.
“Such a bulldozing act will only impose on our people only to say Amen as against their will and rights,” a well-versed Polye said.
Polye commends Baki for cracking down on Police brutality

Polye commends Baki for cracking down on Police brutality

Opposition Leader Don Pomb Polye has saluted the Police Commission Gary Baki for cracking down on police brutality, especially in the ‘condom saga’.
Mr Polye said he was initially annoyed by the ‘rogue behavior’ but with Mr Baki, making its investigation his ‘personal business’ is something everyone should commend him for.
He said the kind of leadership he portrayed here was worth ‘the people’s commissioner.’
He also thanked the top brass for taking disciplinary actions against those responsible for other brutalities in the country.
“As the alternative government, we would like to see more of such attitude in other brutalities which have been stalled.
“Let me also thank the commissioner and his team in the Hanuabada shooting, which saw the identification of those involved surfaced in the investigation,” said an elated Polye.
He, however, said the alternative government believed there was more that the commissioner needed to do to blot out the bad reputation the police has with the people.
With this task for the force in mind, he has called on the commissioner to devise similar drive and effort in the other cases of national interests without fear or favor in the New Year.
“With him coming under the public scrutiny for prolonged-court battles between the factions within the constabulary, in doing what has been urged to would restore public confidence and independence in the force as a constitutional office,” he said.
Meanwhile, Mr Polye said despite this festive season recorded minor traffic-related deaths and accidents, generally it was peaceful.
He also hailed the commissioner and his top brass in the force nationwide for ensuring such a peaceful Christmas.
Polye added that policing was everyone’s responsibility for a peaceful, safe and secure society and that he also urged his fellow citizens to maintain that peaceful festive season into the New Year and beyond.

PNG Opposition farewell US Ambassador Walter North

PNG Opposition farewell US Ambassador Walter North

Papua New Guinea Opposition leader Don Polye has farewelled the out-going U.S ambassador to PNG, the Solomon Islands and the Republic of Vanuatu Walter North saying he has served his country with distinction.

Mr Polye’s remark stems from the United States Senate’s announcement of his successor Catherine Ebert-Gray.

As the alternative Prime Minister, Mr Polye said under North’s leadership since 2012 the country’s relationship with the United States had reached higher heights and under that the country also saw a rise in American investors among others.

“On behalf of our alternative government, let me thank the out-going ambassador for an outstanding service for the betterment of both countries.

“Your legacy will live forever in the shores of PNG and abroad,” he said.

He said Ambassador North would be succeeded by Ambassador-designate Catherine Ebert-Gray, who has been confirmed recently by the US Senate, will assume office early next year after presenting her credentials to the government.

Polye said he was reliably informed that North would depart in late January.

He added that Ebert-Gary had vast experience in Foreign Service, saying she was not only a career member of Senior Foreign Service and Class of Minister-Counselor but also was currently serving as the Deputy Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of administration’s office of logistics management. 

“We, as the alternative government, are looking forward to working with her in nurturing and fostering both countries’ relationship in the years ahead.

December 30, 2015

Police robbed off  K10,700  from  businessman

Police robbed off K10,700 from businessman

 Police do not show pride in the uniform  they wear . Abuse of  vehicles bought with taxpayers money is prevalent.
Drinking in full uniform while on duty as shown in the photo here is also common and unbecoming of  officers who
uphold and implement the country's laws. 

Another foreign businessman by the name of PAUL LEACH has told  PNGFM that he was robbed off K10, 700 allegedly by police officers who took the money from his vehicle.

Mr Leach who runs a solar installations company said the incident took place on the 23rd of December when he was returning from Central Province following installation of solar panels and he was stopped by a police patrol and told to accompany them to Doa Police Station.

 He was then asked to pay K50 and then released but he was then stopped by 6mile police and asked to go to the station there. Leach alleges that his driver was belted up by the officers and his vehicle was ransacked and the money taken.

Cabinet Minister exposes actions of  PNG officials at  Paris Climate change conference

Cabinet Minister exposes actions of PNG officials at Paris Climate change conference

Pundari disappointed with officials' conduct at Paris
A Papua New Guinea cabinet  Minister and a senior public servant have condemned the conduct of some members of the Government delegation to the recent climate change conference in Paris – particularly their attendance, The National reports.

Papua New Guinea 's Environment, Conservation and Climate Change Minister John Pundari told the newspaper that he was disappointed that even his fellow ministers who were part of the Government delegation quickly disappeared.

Acting executive director for Office of Climate Change and Development Joe Pokana agreed that the members of the Government delegation should have stayed back longer.
Pundari said: “Getting airline tickets and allowances to attend international meetings, and to show up for a day or two, then spend (the rest of the time) in other places is corruption at its best, and must never be encouraged.
“During the two weeks, we had State ministers – in particular National Planning and Forestry – who attended with a big number of delegates, then left.”
He said they failed to finish what they were supposed to do – represent the interests of the people of PNG.
“It wasn’t good enough and very discouraging for the delegation that went to Paris,” Pundari said. 
“If it is not within the perimeters of their responsibility, do not attempt to get out to such conferences because you are doing injustice not only to yourself but to the country as a whole.
“If you did not complete the meetings, you don’t come and open your mouth here and make up big stories. 
“We have only one Prime Minister who spoke for every agencies of Government and each agency has their own minister who can speak for themselves.” 
Pundari said he was glad to have stayed with the younger public servants led by Pokana.
“We were able to deliver the last statements at the final plenary of the United Nations,” he said.
“We made our statements and we thanked the conference president as a satisfied country. 
“Let us do the right thing. If you are getting allowance to attend the Paris meet, there was no need for you to spend it up all in Singapore.”
Pokana said only Pundari stayed back with the technical team from OCCD. “We delivered strong statements to the president of COP 21 on the last night and achieved what we have been fighting for,” he said.
“All our issues were captured in the Paris Agreement with the REDD+ as a stand-alone text in the agreement.”
Prime Minister Peter O’Neill had recently congratulated the country’s negotiation team who represented the national and regional interest.

The National/ ONE PNG
Tongan officials now risk arrest over passport sales

Tongan officials now risk arrest over passport sales

Tonga's Prime Minister says senior officials and civil servants from former governments will be arrested and charged amid an investigation over a decades-long passport scandal.

Kaniva Pacific reports the revelation was made by 'Akilisi Pohiva as part of his annual Christmas message.

Thousands of passports have been sold in the past quarter of a century.

Mr Pohiva said King Tupou VI had agreed to begin an investigation of the passport sale while the former government was in power but it refused to do it.

He says in April, the king approved the establishment of a Royal Commission to investigate the scandal.

Four government staff appeared in court in November charged with forgery and bribery in an attempt to obtain passports for a Chinese couple who are still being sought by police.

This month police also arrested and charged a 65-year-old woman for forgery. RNZI
Condom Saga : Police officer on the run

Condom Saga : Police officer on the run

NCD Police boss Ben Turi says, 5 officers were alleged to involve in forcing a young woman to chew and swallow condoms.  He says, one of these 5 police officers who involved in the cruel act as escaped to Nipa in the Southern Highlands Province but this will not affect their investigations in ensuring all officers are dealt with after the complaint is filed by the victim. 

The relatives of the young female, who was forced to swallow condoms by police officers at the Boroko Police Station  have not ruled out retaliation if immediate actions  is not taken by the Police Hierarchy against these 5 officers.

The victim is now with her family at the village in Bereina. The victim will soon get medical attention and is now willing to file a formal complaint after her check up.

A Land of Opportunity and Responsibility – Our Papua New Guinea

A Land of Opportunity and Responsibility – Our Papua New Guinea

New Year’s Message from Peter O’Neill CMG MP Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea

My fellow Papua New Guineans. Papua New Guinea is a place of great opportunity, that also carries with it great responsibility for us all. There is opportunity in the great wealth that has been given to us: ·     the resources deep beneath our homes; ·     the marine life in our waters; and, ·     the animals and plants that grow on our land. As a Government, we have a responsibility - to our people - to make the best use of these resources. This means developing better downstream processing for our exports so we add value. We will, for example, develop a petrochemical industry in our country; and, we will process more of our fish and agricultural exports in Papua New Guinea. By far though, our richest resource – is our people...... the men, women and children of Papua New Guinea. We were elected in 2012 – based on our commitments to improve the lives of people in our country. As a coalition we signed the Alotau Accord – agreeing that we would be a Government of reconciliation; a Government of unity and hope – for stability and prosperity. This was our “Platform for Action” and we have implemented 80 per cent of these commitments. Your Government has made a commitment to provide an education for all of our people. We will have the first full generation of educated Papua New Guineans thanks to free education. Your Government is investing in medical care so that we can keep your family living longer and healthier. We will continue to invest in improving law and order. There is no doubt that a lot more needs to be done in improving our police service. We have already reopened the Bomana training college and new police are now on our streets. A new police discipline structure will also be implemented in 2016 - which will come down hard on undisciplined officers. Then in March we will introduce legislation to target and combat ill-discipline by police men and women. We will have a ‘one strike and you are out’ policy. The people of our country have had enough of ill-discipline from police. We need to restore honour in our constabulary. We will continue to work to deliver the services of Government, and we will continue to make Papua New Guinea a better place. The eyes of the world will be upon us in the coming year and beyond as we host major events. Next year we will host the Africa, Caribbean and Pacific Leaders Meeting, and the FIFA Women’s under 20 World Cup.  Then in 2018 Papua New Guinea will host leaders of the Asia-Pacific for the APEC Summit. Ours is truly a great nation – a nation of great opportunity. As a Government we take seriously the responsibility that you, the people, have bestowed upon us. Your Ministers and your Members of Parliament will continue to work day and night to advance our nation. Our Papua New Guinea is changing, it is changing for the better, and we are all in this together. May God Bless you and your family for a safe and successful year in 2016. Happy New Year Papua New Guinea.

December 29, 2015

Petromin unaware of  PNG Government's talks  with Rio Tinto over Bougainville Copper Ltd

Petromin unaware of PNG Government's talks with Rio Tinto over Bougainville Copper Ltd

PETROMIN says it has no knowledge of any “discussion” between PNG Government and Rio Tinto over the Bougainville Copper Ltd.

But managing director Thomas Abe said the government had the prerogative to enter into such discussion.

He was asked whether the State-owned mineral company Petromin was aware of a reported discussion between Rio Tinto and the Government for the latter to buy the State’s 53.83 per cent share in the Bougainville Copper Ltd for $100 million.
“I am not aware of any discussions between Rio Tinto and the PNG Government,” Abe told The National.
“That is the prerogative of the National Government.
“We are currently operating as Petromin.
“The successor company, Kumul Minerals, formally commences operations by the end of June 2016.”
PNG Today Online recently quoted ABG President Dr John Momis  regarding the discussion between the Government and Rio Tinto.
Momis was reported as saying when addressing the ABG House of Representatives that he had been approached by several senior government officials including Prime Minister Peter O’Neill to discuss the matter.
Petromin chairman Sir Brown Bai said the company was usually invited by the Government to become party to such discussions.
But he said he had no knowledge of the discussion.
Attempts to get comments from the Department of Mineral Policy and Geo Hazards Managements were unsuccessful.
Bougainville Copper Limited is an Australian copper, gold, and silver mining company that operated the Panguna open cut mine on the island of Bougainville.
Properties damaged as strong winds and rain lash Tuvalu

Properties damaged as strong winds and rain lash Tuvalu

Seven homes lost their roofs and eight local kitchens were completely destroyed in Tuvalu.

Fenui News reports people residing near the western coast of the island were evacuated to Liutala Maneapa and Vaipuna Primary School as strong winds and heavy rain lashed the island.

Strong winds overnight brought down trees and pushed the MV Tuvalu onto the beach.

Members of the community of Nui worked with the Disaster Committee and cut down big trees near homes and cleared the road.

Parts of the main road on Funafuti were flooded.

The Director of Tuvalu Met Service, Tauala Katea says the two tropical depressions form near Tuvalu continue to intensify and continue to affect all islands.
The tropical depression that formed near the Solomon Islands continues to move southeast towards Tuvalu and is expected to pass through the southern of Tuvalu.

In the next 24 or 48 hours it will reach Tuvalu waters and will pass through between Niulakita and Rotuma.

It’s moving at a slow pace.
The other active low pressure formed at the southeast of Tuvalu near Samoa is also intensifying and moving slowly towards the south.
Tuvalu continues to be affected by heavy rain and thunderstorms and gale storm from west to southwest at 30 to 35 knots on land areas and at 45 knots on open waters triggering 3 to 4 meters waves.

The Tuvalu Island Disaster Committee on all islands is on alert.

Source: Fenui News
PNG Government plans to attract more hotels

PNG Government plans to attract more hotels

This is one of the new hotels under construction in Port Moresby. This is an artistic expression of the Hilton hotels
currently under construction along Hohola road. 
The Papua New Guinea Government plans to lure more world-class hotels to be established at Ela Beach in Port Moresby – to bring down the cost of hotel accommodation, a Cabinet minister says.
PNG Trade, Commerce and Industry Minister Richard Maru said costs in the tourism and hospitality sector must come down. 

“We are looking for another hotel at Ela Beach to bring in three-world class hotels,” he said.
“The department has been working hard to get these hotels so we can drive competition and build world-class hotels and bring costs down. 
“We want Port Moresby to be the centre of major events. 
“Papua New Guinea and Port Moresby must be the heart-beat of the Pacific.
“And in doing that we must bring the cost of airfares down, we must bring the cost of accommodation and hotels down, we must bring the law and order perception down.”
Maru said the industry was talking to other airlines to service the route between Port Moresby and Singapore.
“Many of our people go to Singapore to access anywhere in Asia.
“Now that Philippine Airlines has come in, the ministry is going to take the leadership to try and encourage other airlines to provide more competition for the route between Port Moresby and Singapore in the New Year.”
He said this was for the purpose of bringing down airfares to attract tourists and overseas businesses to Papua New Guinea.
“We’ve worked for three solid years to get this (Philippine Airlines to Port Moresby) through and I’m so glad that it has come to pass.”

The National/ONE PNG
PNG Air brings in second  ATR-72 aircraft

PNG Air brings in second ATR-72 aircraft

Papua New Guinea Air says its second ATR-72 aircraft arrived in Port Moresby last Wednesday.
PNG Air chief commercial officer Paul Abbot confirmed in an email that “the aircraft arrived in the early hours of Wednesday morning after its ferry flight from Toulouse France”.

He said among the ferry flight crew were two Papua New Guinea Air captains – Captain Brady McCullum and Captain Chris Avenell.
The aircraft is now in the PNG Air hangar having modifications made before it goes into commercial service on January 4, 2016.
He said before the aircraft would start its commercial flights, it would make some trial and training flights.

“PNG Air is excited to have aircraft number two in the country as that offers more capacity and allows us to operate new routes,” Abbot said.
“At this stage, our primary focus is the domestic market.
The airline which recently went through a rebranding exercise is expecting a third ATR aircraft in March.
“We will take delivery of another three ATR aircraft bringing the total fleet to five by December 2016.”
PNG Air had recently announced its flight to Vanimo.
Air Niugini Cadets ready to take on challenge

Air Niugini Cadets ready to take on challenge

Two cadets attached with Air Niugini’s Ground Operations Department have successfully completed their two year internship program and are now ready to take on their new roles.
Nancy Harris and Lionel Kup were recruited under the airline’s graduate management program following the completion of their bachelor programs at the University of Papua New Guinea(UPNG) and the PNG University of Technology(UNITECH) respectively.

Since their recruitment two years ago, Nancy and Lionel were attached to various sections within ANG’s Ground Operations and other key departments including Finance, Human Resources, Marketing, Cargo and Aviation Security where had the opportunity to gain skills and knowledge and understand the core functions of each department and how they inter-relate to Ground Operations Department. Such experience has broadened their understanding of the airline industry in general.
Ms Harris said “ The two years have been challenging but it was also a great learning experience. The training was structured for those in the management level, exposing us to better understand and appreciate each function within Ground Operations and other related departments.”

Kup on the other hand said “ You see people check in for flights and walk to board the aircraft. But the training has taught me that are is a lot of planning that happens prior to an aircraft taking off, from the initial booking to the availability of space, the aircraft , catering, crewing and the list goes on. Iam so thankful to Air Niugini for the opportunity.”

Now that they have completed their cadetship, Nancy will be attached with the Load Control office whilst Lionel will be working with the airline’s project team.
Under the Graduate Cadet program, Air Niugini hopes to have a pool of highly trained young people who are capable of taking more senior roles and responsibilities and gradually move up to take managerial positions within the airline.
Newest Fiji Airways Airbus arrives in Nadi

Newest Fiji Airways Airbus arrives in Nadi

Fiji Airways added a  in  a newest A333-300 airbus to its fleet. The airbus was flown home with President Major General Jioji Konrote on board – while his son is the pilot who flew the aircraft from Hong Kong to Nadi.
The largest of the Fiji Airways fleet was met at the Nadi International Airport by the people of Rotuma with a traditional welcoming ceremony.
The aircraft has a capacity for 289 passengers in economy class and 24 business class passengers.
The leased Airbus A330-300 is expected to enter service next month after clearing local civil aviation

PNG Hunters forward Ottio confident of NRL deal

PNG Hunters forward Ottio confident of NRL deal

Papua New Guinea SP Hunters forward, Kato Ottio is confident of NRL deal with the Canberra Raiders. Ottio is on holidays in his Tatana village after training with the Canberra Raiders for the last couple of months. Ottio said,  he had so far enjoyed the experience and was trying to make the most of the opportunity of training under one of the best in the business, Raiders coach Ricky Stuart.
“It was tough for me the first week. The training there is at a much higher level but I eventually got used to it and caught up.

“Ricky Stuart and the coaching staff have been really helpful. We’re working on everything from my passing to catching to running the ball.

“Ricky has also been reminding me about the importance of balancing both footy and family,” said Ottio.

The humble 21 year old from a mixed parentage of Tatana, Koiari and Buka added that making the Nines team and signing a contract with the Raiders will cap off what has been a big year for him.
“It will be a dream come true for me to make it to the NRL. If I do make it, it will be for my family and for my country.
“Everyone wants to play in the NRL but it all comes down to hard work and opportunities like this only come once so I’ll give it my best,” said Ottio.

Ottio will return to Australia next week to continue training with the Raiders.

Source : Looppng

December 28, 2015

A Grade 12 student killed in nasty  vehicle accident in Buka, Bougainville

A Grade 12 student killed in nasty vehicle accident in Buka, Bougainville

A Grade twelve student is death and two others seriously injured after a speeding vehicle ran into the trio at Noru village Ieta on Buka island early Sunday morning 27th December, 2015, the Dawn FM reports.

North Bougainville Police Commander, Inspector Spencer Aili told New Dawn FM today that the driver an employee of Toyena Guest house was under the influence of liquor at the time of the accident.
Inspector Aili said that the driver was alone and running at high speed and ran off the road hitting three persons who were walking beside the road.

He said after hitting pedestrians, the vehicle ran into the village but did not hit any houses in the village.
Inspector Aili said that the two injured are recovering at the Buka General Hospital whilst the driver is in Police custody awaiting investigations.
He said the car involved in the Accident is a BT 50 Ford Ranger single cab and blue in color also owned by Toyena Guest House.

Meanwhile, Police also reported another Traffic accident at the same location on Christmas Day 25th December, 2015 between 8pm and 10 pm.
Police Commander, AILI said that this time a HONDA CRV owned by HAPPY SOUND TRADING a Chinese Shop in Buka town ran at high speed and ran over a Bus Stop sign completely ripping off the sign whilst trying to avoid hitting a fifth element vehicle ahead of it.
No one was injured in this accident. Dawn FM
Rabbitohs star Sam Burgess marries Phoebe Hooke in star-studded wedding

Rabbitohs star Sam Burgess marries Phoebe Hooke in star-studded wedding

A gathering of 150 family and friends, including movie star Russell Crowe, converged on Sydney's Southern Highlands on Monday afternoon to watch NRL golden boy Sam Burgess marry his girlfriend of 18 months, Phoebe Hooke.

Dressed in a bespoke suit designed by Giorgio Armani, Burgess was joined at the alter by his groomsmen - footballer brothers Luke, Thomas and George, and close friend Chris Feather.

The bride, wearing an Alex Perry gown, was led down the aisle by her bridesmaids - sisters Jemima and Harriett, best friend Phoebe White and sister-in-law Yolanda Hodgson, also dressed in Perry.

Crowe, the Rabbitohs owner and Burgess' mentor, attended the event with his two sons, along with many of the club's stars including current captain Greg Inglis, Isaac Luke, and Luke Keary.

The wedding took place at the expansive Southern Highlands horse stud owned by Hooke's father, political lobbyist and former Minerals Council boss Mitch Hooke.

Their wedding was initially expected to take place early in the new year, however last week, Burgess' fiancee Hooke hosted her "hen's party" at Woolloomooloo's China Doll restaurant with a small gaggle of girlfriends, and her now-mother-in-law, Julie Burgess, and Sam's grandmother Val.

Burgess, who recently returned to Sydney and to his old club, the Rabbitohs, and Hooke, a former writer for women's magazines, became engaged during a European holiday in May and have been inseparable ever since

Like many others of their generation, Burgess and Hooke have documented their romance a great deal on social media websites such as Instagram, with the footballer most recently filming his fiance dancing to the "Carols in the Domain" broadcast wearing her underwear.

A clearly smitten Burgess wrote on Instagram about the performance: "It's clear that @phoebehooke is enjoying 'Carols in the Domain' tonight. Whilst our apartment is empty she uses it as a dance floor - clearly."

The couple met a little over 18 months ago, with Hooke telling the Bath Chronicle in May about their first encounter: "Sam and I met just over a year ago. Neither of us really frequent concerts but we ended up bumping into each other at an Avicii show in Sydney and chatted the whole time. He put his number in my phone and we had our first date a few weeks later while I was in hospital with back problems.

"Before he came to visit me I had my friend rush a pair of track pants to me because I didn't want him to see me in my PJs. We clicked and our banter just worked, which is the most important thing. We like to laugh."

Source: Sydney Morning Herald
Air Niugini Staff visit Cheshire Home

Air Niugini Staff visit Cheshire Home

Christmas has been the season of spreading good cheer, a time of sharing and caring- that’s exactly what a group of staff from Air Niugini did when they visited children with disabilities at the Cheshire home in Port Moresby last week.
Staff from ANG’s Corporate Quality and Safety Department put a smile on the face of these children when they presented gift bags with goodies.
Group leader, Sonia Sebulon said her team did several fundraising activities throughout the year for their social club, some of the monies raised have been used to purchase gifts for the children.
She said“ We were able to buy little things like chocolates, sweet biscuits, fruits, toiletries, tinned food and rice. But most importantly, seeing smile on the face of these children gave us great satisfaction.”
The Air Niugini staff also bought hotdogs, drinks and apples for the children which they shared with them during lunch time.
The visit to the Cheshire home was the staff’s own initiative and they planned to return next year with something bigger and better planned for the children.
Cheshire Home Admin Assistant, Manuka Igo said the operations of Cheshire home depends entirely on donations from individuals and organizations and such gesture from ANG staff meant a lot to these children.
“ Most of these kids don’t even know who their parents are. Of the 21 kids being looked after here, maybe about five have parents that come to visit them but the rest are taken care of by the staff here. That’s why spreading good cheer, sharing with them and seeing the smile on their face makes all of us happy.” Mrs Igo said
There are twenty one (21) children with disabilities who come from all over Papua New Guinea and now reside at the Cheshire home in Port Moresby. They are being looked after by thirteen (13) staff members.
Air Niugini through Kumul Consolidated Holdings(KCH) has been supportive towards the operations of Cheshire Home and other charity organisations including Life care PNG and the PNG Cancer Society by offering discounted airfares for their staff to travel around the country to carry out their operations.
Solomon Airlines First Female Pilot to Take Airbus Helm

Solomon Airlines First Female Pilot to Take Airbus Helm

Honiara, Solomon Islands - Solomon Airlines CEO, Captain Ron Sumsum has congratulated Captain Claudia Walding on becoming the first female pilot to take command of the carrier’s flagship Airbus A320.
A New Zealand national, Captain Walding has been piloting Solomon Airlines’ Islander and Twin Otter aircraft since joining the carrier in 2000.

Her attainment of an Airline Transport Pilots License allows her to take the helm of the carrier’s A320 flagship, in the process becoming Solomon Airlines’ first female pilot to realise this achievement.

Describing Captain Walding’s appointment as a benchmark moment for the carrier’s equal opportunity development for its female pilots, Captain Sumsum said her success represented a major achievement especially in the context of a traditionally male dominated Melanesian environment.

“Since joining us Claudia has never looked back,” Captain Sumsum said.

“She is an inspiration to her gender, having the right mindset to turn a long term potential goal into a reality.

“Congratulations must go to Claudia for her determination to rise to the occasion and lead from the front - literally the front of the cockpit - in her quest for high achievement.”

Captain Sumsum said Claudia’s accomplishment would act as an inspiration for the airline’s other female pilot, Captain Linda Tito who currently flies the airline’s Islander aircraft and acts as first officer on board Twin Otters.

“As a close friend, Claudia’s achievement will certainly inspire Linda,” he said.

“Linda is currently undertaking additional studies in Australia as part of an aviation degree while at the same time seeking to achieve her Airline Transport Pilots License.

“Once she has achieved this, she too will eventually take command of our larger aircraft including the Dash-8 and the Airbus.”

Captain Sumsum also took the opportunity to congratulate Captains Cornelius Vonseu and Steven Aumanu who have just completed their Instructional Techniques Course (ITC) with the assistance of Solomon Islands Civil Aviation (CAASI) Instructor, Captain Gerard Rea.

The ITC course, conducted in the airline’s Henderson Airport training facility, is seen as instrumental in Captain Vonseu achieving his D category Flight Check Approvals for the Twin Otter, in the process enabling him to become a Twin Otter training captain assisting Chief Pilot, Captain Geoff Posala in his role as currently the only Check & Training pilot in the airlines’ domestic fleet.

Captain Steven Aumanu will achieve the same category, which will eventually qualify him to become the second Check & Training pilot for both the airline’s Twin Otter and Islander aircraft.

“We wish all these inspirational pilots all the best in their flying career and look forward to their continued development and contribution to our National Airline,” Captain Sumsum said.

Media Release 
NAQIA takes out 2015 NCD Governors Cup

NAQIA takes out 2015 NCD Governors Cup

The 2015 Governor CUP Grand Final between the Freeway Bumpers and Naqia Garden Hills was very tough with a point separating the two best sides in the competition.
In what was a tough match, it was Naqia Garden Hills who came out victorious and new champions when they beat the Freeway Bumpers 5-4.
Garden Hills Naqia walked away with the Cup prize money of K10, 000 while the Freeway Bumpers took home K5000.00
Meanwhile in other matches played today at the Kone Tiger Oval at Waigani in Port Moresby, for the BOWL match Harbour City Tornadoes proved too strong for the Muddy Walkers of Morata wining the match 10 points to 4.
The Harbour City Tornadoes rewarded with K3.500 whilst the bowl runners-up Muddy Walkers of Morata collected K2,500.
In the PLATE finals featured the 2 City Rabbithos up against the 5 mile chiefs.
8points to Nil was the full time score in favor of the Chiefs from 5 mile as they took K5, 000 while the Rabbithos as the plate runners up collected K3, 500 for their efforts.  PNGFM
Prime Minister O'Neill commends Papua New Guineans for celebrating Christmas peacefully

Prime Minister O'Neill commends Papua New Guineans for celebrating Christmas peacefully

Prime Minister Peter O'Neill has commended Papua New Guineans for celebrating Christmas in its true spirit.
Mr O'Neill says he's impressed the festive season has been celebrated peacefully so far, unlike previous years.
He says, reports from districts have described a peaceful celebration of Christmas.
He also commended police for their efforts to maintain community safety during the festive period.
Mr O'Neill again called on Papua New Guineans to take care on the roads.
The Prime Minister says, one of the biggest concerns continues to be road safety, particularly after recent traffic accidents.

Killer Cop sentenced to 30 years imprisonment

Killer Cop sentenced to 30 years imprisonment

The rogue police officer who killed  Moana Pisimi earlier in the year in Lae city  has been sentenced to  30 years imprisonment.

Justice Pitpit of Lae National court handed down the sentencing on  45 year old Lae based policeman Jack Baria last Thursday on Christmas Eve.

Reading from his brief of the sentence, Justice Pitpit indicated that he finds the circumstances surrounding the shooting and the fatal shot killing the young mother to have been unwarranted.

He said there was no provocation, no self defense no justification and this killing is unnecessary.

Justice Pitpit told Baria that given his 22 years experience in the constabulary, he would be in a better position to make sound judgment whether to have fired that fatal shot or not even after the three warning shots followed by two shorts to the rear tyre of the vehicle.

Justice Pitpit also told Baria that the court accepts and finds that based on reports of PNG Constabulary Ballistic Officer in Charge (OIC) Senior Sargent Joseph Numbos, the shooter (Baria) would have been stationary or static at that time of firing the fatal shot to the back right windscreen.

As such the court finds that Baria is guilty of intent to cause grievous bodily harm thus amounting to the charge of murder.

Justice Pitpit ruled out Baria of willful murder indicating that the vehicle driven by the deceased was fully tinted

He added that murder is a very serious offense and whilst a life has been lost forever nothing can be done to bring back the loss as such the penalty by law is life imprisonment however the maximum penalty can be considered based on case authorities.

Pitpit said the court has gone through all facts presented in court to determine the seriousness of the case in order to attract a severe penalty.

Information such as Baria was a member of a team of four policemen assigned to do beat patrol from the eve of new year (01st January 2015) to the next morning.

Justice Pitpit added that it was in the early hours about 4am in the morning of January 01st 2015 that Baria with his team whilst at the Chinatown police station received the police call claiming a stolen car chase in progress coming their way.

Facts presented also identified that the only two firearms in the police vehicle pursuing the car chase was a pump action shotgun and a M16 A2 rifle held by Baria.

Justice Pitpit also indicated that the high velocity M16 A2 rifle is a military issued firearm instead found its way to the police armory.

The car chase ended at Malahang industrial area and the policemen pursued the suspected stolen vehicle on foot after going off road to a dirt road.

Of the questions asked by the court, Justice Pitpit asked Baria that at that moment how did he intend to stop the vehicle and get the driver out given the fact that the vehicle was fully tinted?

Pitpit also asked that did it occur to him (Baria) that that he will seriously injure someone or was it his intention to flush out the occupant (driver) of the vehicle.

And of other established facts including the autopsy report, Justice Pitpit said there is no dispute of the rifle used, no dispute of the six shots fired, no dispute of three shots fired in air, no dispute of three shots fired at the vehicle, no dispute of the fatal shot from a total of six shots.

Justice Pitpit further added that of the undisputed primary facts the court finds that Baria fired the fatal shot to the right blackhead of Pisimi penetrating her skull and exiting. The court finds that prior to the prisoner firing the set of shots he had thought about it and made a decision to fire the shots.

 Jack Baria is from Bogia district in Madang province and will serve the 30 years less time spent in custody which is less than a month.

December 27, 2015

Bank South Pacific bolsters communities with Christmas gifts

Bank South Pacific bolsters communities with Christmas gifts

The Catholic Church and community in Hahela, Buka were happy to get a newly reconstructed community stage, thanks to Bank South Pacific (BSP).

The project was undertaken by Buka branch staff with help from a local contractor and members of the community. 

The project took two months to complete and was handed over on Saturday 19th December.

BSP staff volunteered over the weekends to get their hands dirty with cleaning around the area, dismantling the old stage, carpentry work, installing sheet of roofing iron and finally giving the new stage a fresh coat of paint.

Commonly known as the ‘Bishops Stage’, this area is used as a central meeting area for church and community gatherings and the renovation was well received by community and church elders.

Bougainville Catholic Diocese, Bishop Bernard Unabali expressed his gratitude towards the bank for assistance.

“Now the community has a newly constructed stage to utilise for the development of school children and adults via various church run training and awareness programs” Bishop Unabali said.

BSP branch manager Julie Warren officiated at the handover ceremony and said the bank was a proud part of the community and pleased to contribute to a project that everyone would benefit from.

“I would urge everyone to look after this facility as it will benefit you in the years to come,” Ms Warren said.

Meanwhile in East New Britain, team work between BSP Kokopo and BSP Rabaul saw the completion and handover of sporting facilities for Malaguna Technical School.

A total of 4 sporting courts comprising 2 basketball courts and 2 multi-purpose courts (netball/volley) were refurbished to excellent condition.

In Pigama, BSP Moro handed over over a newly constructed bus stop to the local community and BSP Kavieng delivered a bus stop and a refurbished aid post to the Kaselok community.

Five branches including Port Moresby, Kainantu, Goroka and Alotau will be handing over their projects in the following days which makes December a very busy time for BSP staff with a total of 9 projects handed over to local communities.

BSP has been investing in a diverse range of community projects, including health, education and sport programs in the community. By the end of 2015, BSP branches and Strategic Business Units (SBU) will have successfully delivered 39 communities around the nation with worthy projects.

Press Release 
Queensland announces Kevin Walters as Maroons Coach

Queensland announces Kevin Walters as Maroons Coach

The Queensland Rugby League has today appointed Kevin Walters as XXXX Queensland Maroons coach through to the end of 2018.

One of Queensland’s favourite rugby league sons, Walters will have the responsibility of leading the Maroons into an exciting new era following Mal Meninga’s elevation to the national role.

QRL Chairman Peter Betros said the Board unanimously agreed to offer the position to Walters after meeting with him before Christmas.

“This is a fantastic appointment for Kevin, the current Maroons Origin team and the game of rugby league in Queensland,” Betros said.

“Kevin’s passion for Queensland, his intimate understanding of the current Origin set-up and his extensive coaching experience at many levels of the game are all key factors that place him in a great position to guide the XXXX Maroons over the next three years.”

Walters said he was thrilled to be given the opportunity.

“Coaching Queensland is something I’ve always wanted to do,” Walters said.

“It’s truly an honour to be in a position to coach such a fine group of players and to be entrusted with the responsibility of developing future Origin talent through our programs.

“I’m really looking forward to the challenge that lies ahead, starting with the QAS Emerging Origin camps in the New Year.”

In recent years, Walters has been heavily involved in the QRL’s High Performance programs.

As the coach of the Queensland Under 20s team in 2012 and 2014, Walters played a pivotal role in the rise of some outstanding talent, including Anthony Milford, Cameron Munster and Luke Bateman.

A former Broncos and Maroons five-eighth, Walters launched his coaching career in style by guiding the Toowoomba Clydesdales to the 2001 Queensland Cup premiership.

He led the Ipswich Jets to the 2008 grand final before taking up the head coaching position with the Catalans Dragons, the club he took to within one win of an English Super League grand final.

Walters carries extensive NRL experience into the Maroons’ top job, having worked with the Brisbane Broncos and Melbourne Storm.

He has been an assistant coach with Meninga’s record-breaking Maroons throughout four State of Origin series.

QRL Managing Director Robert Moore congratulated Walters on his appointment.

“As we prepare to move into a new Origin period, Kevin has demonstrated to us that he understands our needs for the future,” Moore said.

“He takes the role with a long-term view towards the development of future Origin players.”


Playing Record

State of Origin – Queensland Maroons

Years: 1989-1994, 1996, 1998-1999
Games: 20
Tries: 3
Points: 12
* Three Super League games (1997)


Years: 1990-1998
Games: 11
Tries: 1
Points: 4


Teams: Canberra Raiders, Brisbane Broncos, Warrington Wolves
Years: 1987-2001
Games: 296
Tries: 74
Points: 293

Paga Hill Estate, the future of Port Moresby

Paga Hill Estate, the future of Port Moresby

Artistic Expression of  Paga Hill development that will transform Port Moresby city
Papua New Guinea's Capital, Port Moresby is transforming to a modern quickly. Boosted by economic boom and the government's  investment in the country's infrastructures development, Port Moresby  is seeing to be changing even faster than other Pacific cities. 
Kumuls flyover that connects, Port Moresby's Jackson International airport with Waigani city Center is one of the
infrastructures built by the  current O'Neill - Dion Government . 
 In addition to other development  such as Flyovers, Overhead bridges and roads in the the city, a  world-class master planned estate in the heart of Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea is be undertaken by Paga Hill Development. This development will be called Paga Hill Estate. 
Artistic Expression of Paga Hill development
Paga Hill Estate will be the focal point of Port Moresby. Papua New Guinea’s first comprehensively planned multi-use development, enjoyed by residents and attracting thousands of visitors and tourists to the region.
Situated on 13.7 hectares of elevated waterfront land, Paga Hill is the most prominent headland in Port Moresby, neighbouring the CBD and approximately 12km from the international airport.
Paga Hill Estate will feature:
- Luxury five star and quality three star hotels managed by internationally recognised brands
- 800+ residential apartments
- Multi-use commercial precinct for cafes, restaurants, shops, medical, office space, and police beat
- Marina
- National cultural centre and restoration of WWII artefacts
The Paga Hill Estate development will benefit the local and national economy. Thousands of local jobs will be created during its development and ongoing operation. Local businesses will be engaged to provide services creating greater business opportunities for Papua New Guineans. Paga Hill Estate will provide a major boost to the local tourism industry by providing a world-class destination for tourists....

source: Paga Hill Development
TOTAL begins Atelope 6 drilling in PNG

TOTAL begins Atelope 6 drilling in PNG

TOTAL begins Atelope 6 drilling in Papua New Guinea. Photo credit: Total FB page
TOTAL E&P PNG Limited-Operator of the Petroleum Retention License 15 (PRL15) has begun drilling the Antelope 6 appraisal well.

This was announced by its joint venture partner InterOil Corporation, in its market report last week. InterOil said the well is designed to provide structural control and reservoir definition on the field’s eastern flank.

It said the well has a proposed total depth of around 2464 metres (8084 feet) true vertical depth sub-sea and is located about two kilometres east-south-east of Antelope-3.

InterOil holds a 36.5 per cent interest in the well. Total E&P PNG Limited holds a 40.1 per cent stake while, Oil Search has 22.8 per cent.

The remaining 0.5 per cent is held by minority parties. InterOil Corporation is an independent oil and gas business with a sole focus on Papua New Guinea.
PNG Opposition commends Development Partners

PNG Opposition commends Development Partners

PNG Opposition leader Don Polye 
The Opposition has applauded PNG’s development partners for working closely with the successive governments in ensuring the country achieves among others a sustainable economic growth and an improvement in its people’s livelihood.

On learning about the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA), which has invested about K1.5 billion in PNG since 2009 through its concessional loans, grant aid and technical cooperation, Opposition Leader Don Polye has described the huge investment as a ‘vote of confidence in the country and her people’.

As the alternative Prime Minister, he has commended other donor partners, particularly the Asian Development Bank, Aus-Aid, NZ Aid, European Union, US Aid, Export and Import Bank of China (Exim), the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), among others.

"They also have a vote of confidence in our country and her people with similar investments to ensure we materialise our development aspirations in the Vision 2050, PNG Development Strategic Plan 2010 to 2030 and other development plans."

"Loans from all these donors are concessional or soft loans with low interest rates," he said.

He added they also had ‘very strict tendering and procurement processes’ within the bounds of systems of governance, accountability, transparency and bilateral relations.

He has also commended the other development partners like the United Nations, corporate citizens and Non-Government Organizations.

Meanwhile, the Opposition Leader has taken the Prime Minister Peter O’Neill and his government to task over the K6 billion EXIM bank loan.

"There is no indication of the Exim bank loan in the 2016 Budget papers and that I am asking the Prime Minister to give an account of this loan.

"Has it been secured already andif so, which projects have been catered for by the loan?" asked Mr Polye.
Report police abuse to us, says  Police Chief

Report police abuse to us, says Police Chief

Police Commissioner Gari Baki 
PNG Police  Commissioner Gari Baki is calling on the members of public who are affected by Police crimes and abuses to report  to his office. He said this after he raised concerns over  the circulation of a video on social media and Facebook showing a woman being purportedly forced by police to chew and swallow condoms.

Mr Baki has appealed to the victim to come forward and help internal investigators identify the people involved.

He said in a statement  that although the footage does not show the rogue police, it was almost certain that the crime was committed inside a police station.

The commissioner is also certain that the voice of the man forcing the victim to chew and swallow the condoms can be identified.

The Commissioner said the perpetrator will be dismissed from the constabulary and criminally charged.

The constabulary has set procedures to allow such allegations or crimes perpetrators by police to be reported, Mr Baki said.

He stated that such complaints can be registered with the director of internal affairs PO Box 85, Konedobu, or addressed directly to his office at the police headquarters.

He added that the senior management of the constabulary was trying to weed out corruption, police abuse and unethical behaviour.

"We will not tolerate such crimes, I appeal to members of the public affected by such crimes and abuses to report them to the constabulary’s public complaints section so that suspects can be dealt with both administratively and criminally."
Australian Government restores bridges in Oro Province, PNG

Australian Government restores bridges in Oro Province, PNG

The Australian Government has restored this bridge in Oro Province after it washed away.. Photo credit: Australian
High Commission- PNG 
FOUR bridges in Northern Province PNG funded by the Australian Government should be completed by early next year, Governor Gary Juffa said yesterday.

He said that the bridges along the Oro Bay-Kokoda Highway had been washed away in 2007 by Cyclone Guba.

Due to lack of co-ordination and administration, the bridges and other restoration work have been left unattended until 2012 when Juffa was elected as regional MP.

Mr Juffa, who visited the construction of the bridges during the week, said he was pleased to see the bridges taking shape. He said it took him six months to secure paper work and knock on every door to ensure the bridges were given back to the province.

He thanked the Australian tax payers and the Australian Government for more than K30 million to ensure his people were able to access to basic services through the bridges. The bridges include Embogo, Girua, Double Cross and Kumusi which were capable of crippling the province’s economy if they were left unattended, he said.

Canstruct Ltd, the company engaged to build the bridges has already set up the basements of all the bridges and are now in the process of completing the decks.
YES has had a big impact on PNG ICT businesses

YES has had a big impact on PNG ICT businesses

By Patrick Reeder - Australian Business Volunteers 

In late 2014 Australian Business Volunters (ABV)  relaunched our revised and updated Your Enterprise Scheme (YES) with a pilot program in Port Moresby. This first YES in over four years was tailored to meet the needs of a group of small Port Moresby ICT businesses.

To evaluate the program’s medium-term impact ABV contacted participants in November 2015. The returned surveys indicate program has been highly beneficial to participating businesses over the last 12 months.

Three quarters believed that the skills they learnt during the YES program had significantly improved the efficiency of their businesses, and half advised that they had significantly increased profits.

The respondents identified a range of business areas which had benefited from the YES.

Human resources management appears to be an area to have experienced particular change in most businesses. Two businesses have hired new people, while another participant considered that ‘getting a collective view from all three employees’ regarding important decisions had been an important operational change as a result of the YES. Another business decided to control expenses by putting the co-founders on fixed regular pay instead of simply distributing profits as they were earnt. For Marsh Narawec of Kumulsoft hiring a new employee was a big change of strategy:

“Previously we did not employ staff because we feared that we may not be able to pay them regularly because our income is not regular. In addition, we feared that if we trained them, they would ‘steal’ our skills and start their own companies. This was our greatest obstacle in growth. The YES program enabled us to overcome that fear and we took the risk. The new staff member was able to generate steady monthly income and we are able employ two more this year”.Another area which has experienced change in most businesses was long-term business planning. In Mr Narawec’s words: “We were all over the place and not focusing. After the YES training we are now only focusing on promoting and selling our two key products”. According to Allan Pidik of Bahabis IT Consulting, “YES has given me more ideas and plans to expand to another business arm.”

Increased confidence was also a theme. For Iru Stanley Ora of VLITE IT Solutions, “sales and marketing are the areas I lacked so the YES training (in these areas) gave me the confidence to find clients and to convert deals.“ According to Mr Pidik YES “has given me confidence and courage to work hard in order to become a successful small businessman”.

Running a successful small ICT business can be tough but these small businesses have made important positive changes since undertaking the YES last year, and respondents indicated they would be keen to receive future mentoring, training or capacity building assistance from ABV. It will be businesses like theirs which will help build sustainable and inclusive economic growth in Papua New Guinea, and ABV is proud to have helped them along the way and will be looking at ways to continue assisting them in the future.