By DALE LUMA
NAMBAWAN Super Ltd (NSL) will consider investing in Telikom Ltd, a source says, after the Prime Minister James Marape announced the partial privatisation of the telecommunication company.
“We will consider it as we do any other investment prospect that we become aware of,” the source told The National.
“Superfunds have a stringent investment process defined by regulation and all opportunities are passed through that process – this won’t be any different.”
Marape said the partial privatisation of Telikom Ltd was “a major step in the recapitalisation and monetisation of PNG’s non-oil, gas and mineral assets and an opportunity to broaden the ownership of the companies”.
“The liberalisation of the telecommunications industry for the benefit of the citizens of PNG has remained my focus since taking office in June 2019,” he said.
“This lead to more affordable communication, greater reliability, and accessibility.
“Communication and the transfer of information across the country and the region is vital to sustained social and economic prosperity.”
Marape said partial privatisation would lead to expansion and innovation – not job losses.
“It will lead to improved security, governance, and accountability. This is an opportunity to place private sector resources where we can see the greatest return on investment and re-harmonise the markets where they operate.”
Meanwhile, Kumul Consolidated Holdings (KCH) yesterday said it has presented information memorandum for partial privatisation of Telikom Ltd to the two major superannuation funds, NSL and Nasfund.
Acting managing director David Kavanamur, on Monday, presented the memorandum to Nasfund chief executive officer Ian Tarutia and his investment team.
The same was sent to NSL chief investment officer David Kitchnoge, inviting NSL to consider this investment opportunity.
“This is a substantial step forward in this SOE reform initiative and represents months of preparation, peer review, and assessment,” Kavanamur said.
“This fulfils our Government’s directive to commence steps to partially privatise State-owned telecommunications company, Telikom Ltd, and reduce the State’s control to a significant minority position.” Nasfund chief investment officer Fiona Nelson accepted the information memorandum on behalf of the company.
“I thank the Government for its trust in Nasfund as a leading local Institution to partner with the State to explore opportunities for nation building in this critical telecommunication infrastructure of our country.”
KCH and Nasfund investment teams will work collectively to progress steps to develop the transaction to completion within agreed timeline.
A timeline has been adopted to progress due diligence, and transaction structuring and negotiation, with recommendations expected before the end of March, in time for Cabinet approval.
By DALE LUMA