Port Moresby’s next growth corridor


Major industrial projects underway or in the pipeline north-west of Port Moresby look likely to create an industrial and logistics corridor over the next five years. Business Advantage PNG examines the progress in Central Province, just outside Papua New Guinea’s capital.

The AES-owned Ravuvu Business Park overlooking Fairfax Harbour, with Curtain Brother's PNG Dockyard in the distance.

The AES-owned Ravuvu Business Park overlooking Fairfax Harbour, with Curtain Brother’s PNG Dockyard to the left in the distance.

The presence of ExxonMobil’s giant PNG LNG plant, 20 kilometres north-west of Port Moresby, combined with plenty of available land, has made the area in Central Province just outside the National Capital District ripe for a new industrial corridor.

With gas exports from the plant due to commence in the second half of this year and continue until at least 2030, the area has long-term potential not only for petrochemical-related activity, but wider business and residential development.

Existing infrastructure in the area already includes InterOil’s 10-year-old Napa Napa oil refinery, the recently-expanded Kanudi power station, Curtain Brothers’ PNG Dockyard on Motukea Island and the recently-opened Kavuvu Business Park, operated by Avenell Engineering Systems Ltd.

But that’s just the start.

Port Moresby's growth corridor

Edai Town

A modern, gated 500-unit executive K250 million (US$100 million) housing estate called Edai Town is being designed to house as many as 2000 people, mainly executives, working in this new industrial corridor.

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‘This housing development is important for the country, not just the project itself,’  says Kym Yong, Director of landowner company Portion 11 (Management) Ltd., the estate’s developer.

‘It’s a new concept for this country, with a mix of housing, industry, shopping, police station, fire station, a market, a CBD, including hotel. It will cater for PNG nationals.’

Stage one of this five-year development is underway. Two display homes are open. The first four townhouses will be completed in February, with a total of 100 built by the end of 2014, Yong tells Business Advantage PNG.

The estate will be self-sufficient for water, sewage and electricity.

Private ports expand

Further south, the two private ports in the area, Curtain Brothers’ PNG Dockyard and Avenell’s Ravuvu Business Park, are both planning to expand.

The recently-constructed wharf is becoming ‘a genuinely busy port,’ says Dominic Avenell, Managing Director of Avenell Engineering Systems Ltd.

Already operational, the 72-hectare park aims to offer a full range of facilities including accommodation, office space, commercial and industrial lots, workshops, a licensed dangerous goods area, holding yards and lay down areas, as well as recreational and catering facilities.

‘I want to give companies a fully-serviced platform on which they can build their business,’ Avenell tells Business Advantage PNG.

Across Fairfax Harbour, Curtain Brother’s PNG Dockyard will open a new dry dock facility, valued at K500 million (US$198 million), in 2014. This will enable vessels to be repaired in PNG instead of travelling to Singapore, China or the Philippines.

When the new dry-dock is in operation, the total PNG Dockyard business will employ 800 PNG nationals, double the current workforce.

Petrochemical plant

The as-yet undeveloped site of the proposed Konebada Petroleum Park—set aside by PNG’s government for the development of a local petrochemical industry—is adjacent to the PNG LNG plant.

Last June, Prime Minister Peter O’Neill announced he had met executives from Mitsubishi Gas Chemical Co and Itochu Corporation to discuss their proposal—first raised in 2006—to build a petrochemical plant in the park.

If the project goes ahead, O’Neill said at the time, it could create 5000 jobs during construction and afterwards.

Port relocation?

Looking further into the future, the Independent Public Business Corporation is working on plans to relocate the Port Moresby’s port, as part of state-owned PNG Ports’ 2012-2032 strategic plan. No details about the relocation, including its likely site, are yet available.


  1. I have recently visited the proposed development sites and am very impressed with the potential.
    Gives me hope of returning home and offering many of my family a future in transport and Engeneering.

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