Juha’s landowner identification not complete


LANDOWNERS from Juha Petroleum Development Licence nine (PDL 9) in Western have not received their royalty and equity payments for the PNG LNG project because landowner identification has not been done, Petroleum Minister Kerenga Kua says.
Kua said this in Parliament yesterday.
He said identification should have been done in 2020 but due to the onset of the Coronavirus (Covid-19), developer ExxonMobil PNG Ltd restricted its travels which resulted in the delay.
He said the operator as of this month had lifted its travel restrictions and that the process would now begin.
“Juha is part of the integrated PNG LNG project and they have the right to receive royalty and equity benefits,” Kua said.
“Their entitlements have accumulated over the years because the landowner identification process is not yet complete.
“We could have started that process in 2020 when the Marape Government came in but Covid came.
“For two years, ExxonMobil has restricted its travels in and around the PDL areas so we have not completed that process.”
Kua said this month Exxon had lifted those restrictions and would go to Juha and complete outstanding landowner identification after which a ministerial determination would be gazetted and the landowners would then be able to receive their benefits.
Kua said the entitlements would be kept in a trust account until statutory processes were concluded and payments will be sorted out and paid.