Samb says govt working on broadening business reserve list


ACTING Commerce and Industry Minister William Samb says the Government is working on broadening the reserve business and employment list.
He was responding to a question in Parliament by Moresby North East MP John Kaupa about when the list for reserve businesses and employment would be published.
Samb said an amendment was already made to the Investment Promotion Authority (IPA) and endorsed by the National Executive Council (NEC).
“It is with the legal people to get that amendment in law.
“Once that’s done then it gives us the Commerce Department the legal avenue to broaden that list,” Samb said.
“That was one of the task that I was tasked to do when I was appointed acting minister.”
Samb said his predecessor Sam Basil had brought the list and he was now seeing it through.
“Necessary amendment has been done to the IPA Act and that will give us the basis for us to broaden that list so that it is relevant to PNG now and going forward and it will address many of the issues raised,” Samb said.
Kaupa said there were more than 25,000 women registered under his district’s small-to-medium enterprise (SME) programme and had opened bank accounts with PNG Micro Bank and MiBank but were faced with stiff competition from the influx of Asians operating tucker shops and trade stores in the settlements.
He said having the list would give the opportunity to the people to engage in SMEs.
Ijivitari MP Richard Masere in a supplementary question stressed that foreign investors were engaging Papua New Guineans by establishing partnerships or using the names of locals to apply for IPA registration.
He asked if cottage businesses were restricted to Papua New Guineans only and whether the Government would look into ensuring that cottage businesses were protected for the people of PNG.
Samb said it was one of the issues that he wanted to get a clear understanding on and confirmed that his office was working on it.