Tuesday, April 30, 2013

A warning of a downturn in mining in PNG


Papua New Guinea's Chamber of Mines and Petroleum says the global mining boom is definitely over and a current down turn, is likely to have a big impact on capital spending on exploration and financing for many existing and planned projects in PNG.
The Chamber's outgoing President, Doctor Ila Temu says there has been a significant drop in gold prices in recent times and with lower commodity prices, it will impact PNG government's 2013 budget and planned expenditure.
Firmin Nanol reports:
Presenter: Firmin Nanol
Speaker: Doctor Ila Temu, Country Manager for Barrack Gold, PNG's Chamber of Mines and Petroleum elected Oil Search Managing Director, Gerea Aopi New Crest Mining's Country Manager, Peter Aitsi
Doctor Ila Temu who is also Country Manager for Barrack Gold in PNG says the Chamber wants the government to help planned and existing mining and petroleum projects get off the ground quickly.
He says the drop in gold prices and related impact on the mining sector could make potential investors think twice before investing in PNG.
Dr Temu says the PNG government needs to honour outstanding commitments both to landowners and developers of certain projects.He says the government also needs to build build and improve existing infrastructure in certain project areas so those projects could get off the ground soon.
Barrick Gold's PNG Country Manager, Dr Ila Temu says Barrick is also considering selling some of its projects in Australia due to the current global down turn in the mining boom.
He has also cautioned that the PNG government's 2013 budget will be impacted because revenue projections were based on high gold prices before the current down turn and drop in gold prices.
PNG's Chamber of Mines and Petroleum elected Oil Search Managing Director, Gerea Aopi as its new President during its annual general meeting last week.
Mr Aopi says the government needs to improve efficiency in its public service to ensure projects which are under exploration stage and others nearing completion before full production could finish soon.
He says the chamber will discuss certain issues affecting the industry with the government.
Meanwhile, the Chamber has urged the government to reconsider its position on a proposed review of its taxation regime.
The review panel include two former Internal Revenue Commissioners Sir Nagora Bogan and David Sode and former Australian Treasurer Peter Costello.
The Committee has started work already and is expected to submit its report and recommendations by the end of June this year.
The outgoing President Dr Ila Temu says the mining and petroleum sectors already pay well and above their normal company tax and it should not increase further.
The Chamber's Senior Vice President and New Crest Mining's Country Manager, Peter Aitsi also cautioned the government to be mindful of its expenditure.
PNG's Chamber of Mines and Petroleum is the peak industry association which represents the interest of over two hundred companies operating mining and petroleum projects in PNG.
President Gerea Aopi, Senior Vice President Peter Aitisi, Vice President Richard Kassman and out-going President Dr Ila Temu in a joint news conference issued the caution in Port Moresby today.

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