In brief: Nadzab Airport redevelopment project officially launched and other business stories


Nadzab airport set to get a major facelift, PNG Ports says only three ports are profitable, and SIM card registration deadline extended. The business news you need to kickstart your week.

Ambassador Jerney Videtic and Prime Minister James Marape. Credit: EMTV


The Business Council of PNG said that the return to the lockdown in the NDC will ‘inevitably cause 68 per cent of businesses to shut down’ by the end of 2020. (The National)


The National Information and Communications Technology Authority has extended the SIM card registration deadline to 31 August for provincial urban centres and 30 September for the rest of the country. After the deadline, unregistered SIM cards will be deactivated. (Post-Courier)


Vision City Mega Mall and Tango Group outlets have announced reduced operating hours during the second lockdown. (Post- Courier)


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PNG recorded 19 more positive cases of COVID-19 on 2 August, which brings the total number of confirmed corona cases to 110, according to a statement from the Prime Minister. He said that ‘we are telling all employers to do shifts and work load shedding, we getting students to stay away from classes … If we don’t act now, the cost to lives plus economy will be much burdensome later.’

Funding and development

The Ambassador to the European Union (EU) in PNG Jernej Videtic and Prime Minister Marape took place last week discussed last week, among other matters, an EU grant project in East Sepik Province, and the European Development Fund. (EMTV)


The Asia Pacific Bank through its Asia Pacific Disaster Response Fund has pledged more than US$13 million (K45 million) in grants to help Pacific nations finance their COVID-19 responses; Papua New Guinea will receive US$3 million (K10.4 million). (LOOP PNG)


Kumul Consolidated Holdings is advertising for expressions of interest for the sale and redevelopment of Port Moresby’s historic old wharf. EOIs, including company and financial profiles, in the six-hectare site are due via email (to by 3pm on 11 August. (Kumul Consolidated Holdings)


Only three ports out of 15 are profitable, PNG Ports said last week. The three ports are: Motukea (POM), Lae and Kimbe, and they fund the operations of PNG’s remaining ports. (Port-Courier)


Bank South Pacific’s Robin Fleming. Credit: BAI

Bank South Pacific has put in place a loan repayment arrangement for workers laid off from the Porgera mine, announced Group Chief Executive Officer Robin Fleming. The National reported that the ‘arrangement would impact’ the bank’s loan portfolio but that once the workers’ superannuation funds are released, these would be used to settle their debts with the bank.


The Bank of PNG is working on the Know Your Customer Project (KYC Project), said Loi Bakani, Bank of PNG Governor.

‘Identification is a big issue for our simple rural people in the village, so that’s our next project. And we are working very hard to have a simplified and standardised way or system of identification,’ he said. The project is a joint venture between the Central Banks of Samoa, Tonga, Vanuatu, Fiji, the Solomon Islands and PNG, and it will be accessible by all financial institutions. (LOOP PNG)


‘The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is negatively affecting PNG through the decline in global trade and growth, and causing international commodity prices to fall sharply,’ said Bakani in a blog post for the Griffith Asia Institute, analysing the effect of COVID-19 in the PNG economy and summarising the central bank’s efforts to stabilise the economy.


Petroleum and Energy Minister Kerenga Kua said that the State is negotiating to gain 22.5 per cent equity in Twinza Oil’s Pasca A gas-condensate project in Gulf Province. Kua told The National that the other matter was the appointment of the state nominee to hold the state’s equity in the project. ‘Although it will be KPHL (Kumul Petroleum Holdings Limited), the decision will have to be made by the Cabinet,’ he said. ‘I am making a submission for Cabinet to make the appointment.’


A convoy of vehicles travelling from Porgera to the Port of Lae was ‘unlawfully prevented’ from leaving the mine site, said Barrick Niugini in a statement. The convoy consists of 15 trucks carrying leased equipment that is now being repatriated to its owners.

‘The company calls for the convoy to be allowed to leave Porgera for the purpose of transporting the third-party-owned equipment to Lae, and will urgently raise the issue of the contravention of the court order with relevant authorities, and take all steps necessary to protect its legal rights and obligations with respect to dealing with company assets, and the assets of its business suppliers,’ Barrick said.


Credit: PNG Air/Facebook

PNG Air has said in a statement that it will be ‘business as usual’ for its domestic flights during and after the 14-day lockdown in the National Capital District (NCD). (PNG Air)


The airline also announced new routes connecting Lae and the Highlands and its plans for new destinations connecting Eastern Highlands, Morobe and Western Highlands. (The National)


Cocoa and coffee farmers in the Albinama villages in East Sepik will receive K100,000 to help production. John Simon, Maprik MP and Minister for Agriculture and Livestock, committed the funds last week during a visit to a nursery in the Maprik economic zone. (The National)

Photograph of the week

Credit: Lae Chamber of Commerce

The ground breaking ceremony for the K692 million redevelopment of Nadzab Airport in Lae, Morobe Province, took place last week. Prime Minister Marape and representatives from Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) were present during the ceremony. JICA co-funded the project (K578 million) with the PNG Government (K114 million). Nadzab is scheduled to be completed by 2022.

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