PNG Gov worries over giving mineral ownership to landownersAugust 21 2009 at 6:07 AM
PNG worries over giving mineral ownership to landowners.
Presenter: Firmin Nanol
Papua New Guinea's Mineral Policy Department warns of severe effects on the country's mining industry if a proposed amendment to the Mining Act is passed by parliament. The amendments are aimed at giving ownership over minerals to landowners. Under existing mining legislations the government owns the minerals discovered six feet below the surface. Mining companies and investors negotiate directly with the government to explore and develop such resources. Landowners are paid 1.2 per cent royalty for oil and gas and a little over 2 per cent for minerals.
But a Member of the PNG Parliament from the Western province wants all that changed. North Fly MP, Boka Kondra says mineral ownership should be given to the landowners. He has therefore given notice to introduce a bill to change PNG's Mining Act of 1992. If passed, it will replace the word ''State'' with ''landowners'' as owners of minerals discovered.
Boka Kondra whose electorate covers PNG's Ok Tedi mine, claims, landowners have been losers and had their environment destroyed. Mr Kondra says he does not want the government to own, regulate and do business with people's resources. He claims landowners get what is left after the developers and government had their share.
The Mineral Policy Department is responsible for creating mineral policy and regulating mining activities. The Director of Mineral Policy and Legislation, Harry Kore says that if passed, the bill could scare aware investors and would be disastrous to the industry. He says ''It will literally change the whole scope of mining activities in PNG." The substitution of the word State with landholder throughout the Mining Act 1992 and the Oil and Gas Act 1998 does not adequately serve the purposes or intensions of the amendment.
Mr Kore says "The impact on the PNG economy will be severe. Companies would not want to sacrifice their money in any high risk climates.
The security of the tenure of their licence will also be in question. If the companies do leave then thousands of Papua New Guineans will be out on the street with no jobs."
He says one group of landowners could become rich over-night and benefits will not be shared equally. "Under the current system, everybody in the community receives the benefits derived from the activity as long as they are impacted, regardless of whether minerals are found on their land or on a neighbouring land''.
The North Fly MP, Boka Kondra has given notice on the proposed amendments but it has yet to be tabled and debated by parliament.
Or PNG Government worries about making L/O Millionaires/Billionaires
|August 21 2009, 10:00 AM |
PNG government can start firstly by saving cost in abolishing the MRA office and sack Kepas Wally as this office has been sucking the mining players for so long that they forgot the real PNG people and issues. The government must only play the role as regulators and raises its funds through taxes like the USA the landowners own the resource and fair enough they becoma millionaires, the other departments play their roles in environment, employment and regulatory roles. The industry is now pumping cash into the mining ministers pocket to set up a task force to discount the issue and bring fears into the ordianary peoples minds. One thing that they mentioned that is very sickening to believe is that L/O do not have a start up capital to finance any mining activities or under a JV arrangements, just a reminder to those stupid economic degree holders heading this pro/cons committee that the peoples cash or equity lays beneath the soil and who ever wants to be the partner bring your cash and that the end of the story. Come November we all pin our hopes to have our Mps to vote for the bill otherwise there will be an all out riot with all mining activities shut down.
Re: Or PNG Government worries about making L/O Millionaires/Billionaires
|August 21 2009, 10:44 AM |
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