Gas project to spur new industries
By BAEAU TAI
THE multi-billion PNG gas project will underpin the government’s strategy to promote domestic downstream processing industries in the country, PNG Gas Project coordinator Joe Gabut has said.
He said this would occur through:
Ensuring third party access to the pipeline and, hence, gas;
Auxiliary pipeline to deliver “wet gas” feedstock to the Konebada Petroleum Park (yet to be built); and
A northern gas pipeline to deliver “wet gas” to a possible LNG processing facility.
Speaking at a petroleum seminar in Port Moresby recently, Mr Gabut said the policy on downstream processing was consistent with the government’s Medium Term Development Strategy (MTDS) to promote the economy’s transition to one more heavily based on value-adding manufacturers, to diversify the economy’s export base and to create wage employment in urban areas.
Acting Secretary for Petroleum and Energy Bernard Pawih also told the same seminar that the “white paper” on downstream processing was in line with the government’s desire to encourage large-scale export-based industries in the country.
“The policy initiatives outlined in the draft “white paper” are only a first, though very important step in the process. A constant dialogue and interaction would need to be maintained with the prospective investors and corrective steps taken, as and when required, to make downstream petroleum projects beneficial to all stakeholders,” said Mr Bernard.
The “white paper” has reached a second draft level and is currently awaiting feedback from the Petroleum Department offices and the PNG Gas Office.
Another new policy for establishing a Petroleum Industrial Park (PIP) in the country is also being worked on by the Petroleum Department.
The policy framework would set out the basis for establishing an industrial petroleum part or industrial centre where downstream petroleum activities can be located in one location.
Mr Pawih said the PIP would inevitably attract related activities that are non-petroleum, yet would support or complement the growth and sustainability of the core activities in the park.
The related business would include welding, pipeline makers, health, safety and hygiene, real estate, property, agriculture research centre, supermarket and customs.
“A Petroleum Industrial Park would constitute petroleum-related activities and a set of companies specialising in the petroleum and energy business and can exist on its own or form part of an Eco-Industrial Park. The main players in the industrial park are part developers, park managers, companies and regulators and the State,” Mr Pawih said.
“Since the concept is new more work is required in discussing specific policy issues such as the taxation structure, incentives, creation of a Park Authority, and the administrative and control aspects of the PIP,” he added.