Business environment ‘vibrant’


THE smooth transitioning of the merger arrangement between Oil Search Ltd and Santos Ltd has demonstrated an independent and vibrant regulatory environment in Papua New Guinea, an official says.
PNG Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (PNGEITI) head of national secretariat Lucas Alkan said the smooth transitioning indicated that businesses could operate free of undue control and influence.
While welcoming the merger, Alkan said it was an achievement for both companies who were prominent and competitive players in the PNG petroleum space.
Santos on Dec 17, announced on the Australian Stock Exchange that the merger of Santos and Oil Search was effected on the same day.
Accordingly, Santos had acquired 100 per cent of the issued capital in Oil Search from Oil Search shareholders.
“PNGEITI is happy to witness this merger of two strong companies and we believe that this arrangement will bring enhanced benefits for the shareholders and the economy,” Alkan said.
“Oil Search has been a founding member of the PNGEITI multi stakeholder group and has played significant roles in the EITI implementation process in PNG.
“We thank Oil Search as a company for the support PNGEITI enjoyed for the last eight years and we look forward to welcoming Santos – another significant player in the industry now with boosted capacity and as second biggest player in the PNGLNG project and other significant projects that are in the pipeline – to the PNGEITI MSG.”
Alkan also acknowledged MSG representative Musje Werror, managing director of Ok Tedi Mining Ltd, for his appointment to the Santos board as a non-executive director.