Chamber partnering with corporation to rollout training


THE Porgera chamber of commerce and industry will partner with the Small to Medium Enterprise Corporation (Smec) to roll out financial literacy training in the mining township.
Chamber president Nickson Pakea said the aim was to turn illegal miners into micro, small-to-medium enterprise (MSME) owners.
Pakea said the chamber had set a target of creating 5,000 SMEs by 2030.
“In order to achieve that I want Smec to train the MSMEs, mostly farmers,” he said.
Pakea said mechanisms would be in place to ensure SMEs/MSMEs continued after the mine’s closure.
Pakea said Porgera had benefited over the last 30 years through infrastructural development, but the people lacked skills to develop and manage small businesses.
He said when the mine started operation in 1988, many people were illiterate and used their royalty, equity and compensation payments for enjoyment without focusing on savings or investment.
“If they had some knowledge of saving the money or doing business, at least there should be some reflection of the mine’s impact over the last 30 years,” Pakea said.
“So in the next 20 years, there must be cash flow.
“Even when the mine stops, SMEs must not stop.
“Currently we have about 210 SMEs and 278 MSMEs, when the mine stopped last year, all these stopped as well because there was no other avenue that they could tap into as all were reliant on the Porgera mine.
“I don’t want that after 20 years, cash flow must be generated in the valley after closure,” Pakea said.