Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Don Polye assures resource owners maximum benefit

THE current Mining and Petroleum laws will be reviewed to consider maximum benefits for resources, Opposition Leader Don Polye said last Friday.

Launching an alluvial gold mine exploration in Maramuni, Mr Polye said livelihood of the people should be improved first before exploring the project. “As alternative Prime Minister, I want to review the current legal regime to ensure landowners’ benefit more,” he told a cheering crowd.

He said their livelihood had to be improved first, adding lessons should be learnt from other landowners screaming for their rightful dues. He said those new mining and petroleum projects will be categorized into two under the alternative government’s policy; 

- Those companies which got licenses under the current legislative regime. 

- The second is where exploration has already started without the issuance of the licenses. It will come under a new law to maximize their benefit more than the state’s or the developer’s. In this way, our people will have better platform to maximize their benefits. 

“Other new petroleum projects will be developed under a new regime. This could be similar to the mining sector proposition to shift to a production/benefit sharing agreement. Taxation, royalties and benefits will be reviewed to create better business environment for all parties. Again, local and national content should be given significant attention here.

“All exploration licences issued be reviewed and exploration work done so far, will be assessed,” he said. Polye said national content or local content was very important, adding a national content policy needed to be developed immediately in the petroleum sector.

“Petroleum technological and technical skills need to be developed in young Papua New Guineans. “PNG’s technical college specific for Petroleum be established or upgraded where such courses are taught. Training and employment of local people and finally achieving localization of positions is crucial for enhancing national content,” he said.

Meanwhile, a career geologist from Maramuni Yessimi Marinki commended Polye for making possible the alluvial gold mine exploration. Marinki said Prime Minister Peter O’Neill had failed to give a green light for the project, adding his proposal was collecting dust in his office for over two years.

Landowner Peter Kep receiving exploration test certificate from Polye whilst others look on. Image Credit: Media Unit - PNG Opposition.

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