The National, Thursday August 1st, 2013
By MALUM NALU
THE operator of the PNG LNG project has commended the Government for setting up a sovereign wealth fund to manage its revenue from the gas project starting next year.
Esso Highlands Ltd managing director Peter Grahamsaid on Tuesday that a lot of good had already come out of the development of the project and the soveriegn wealth fund would be one of them.
“The sovereign wealth fund is a very good intiative from the Government to develop, plan, and manage the funds from the project,” Graham said.
“The Government has set in place its plan to steward the revenue that comes to the State from the project for the long term.
“Improved management of these monies will see a lot of change in Papua New Guinea for the good.”
Graham said the LNG project had already set the PNG economy in motion.
“The Government themselves described this as a ‘transformational project’,” he said.
“You can already see the positive benefits for the economy.
“I’ve lived here for five years and had been coming to Papua New Guinea for nine years, and just look at Port Moresby, and how it has changed over the last three to four years. Extraordinary.
“There are signs of a real middle class developing in the city.
Homes, offices, shops, lot of economic development.”
Graham said the Government had always been supportive of the project.
“That’s one of the really pleasing aspects of working in PNG,” he said.
“Everyone sees that it’s a transformational project for the country.
“When there’s been a challenge, we’ve tended to work together to try and find solutions.
“The Government has been a great partner for us in Papua New Guinea.”