Superfunds to invest in Telikom

Main Stories
William Duma

MEMBERS of the two major superfunds are expected to own more than 50 per cent – worth around K700 million – of Telikom Limited, according to State Enterprises Minister William Duma.
He told The National yesterday that it would be a good investment by the 623,497 members of the National Superannuation Fund (Nasfund) and the 208,000 members of Nambawan Super.
“It’s a good investment for (the superfunds) members. Economics call for new management and capital investments,” Duma said.
He did not disclose the actual investment amount as negotiations were ongoing between Telikom and the two superfunds.
Cabinet in December approved the partial privatisation of Telikom assets valued at K1.4 billion.
In January this year, Prime Minister James Marape said the delivery of essential services required a more innovative approach by State-owned enterprises if they were to remain competitive.
“The partial privatisation of Telikom Ltd is 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,” Marape said.
“The liberalisation of the telecommunications industry for the benefit of the citizens of PNG has remained my focus since taking the oath of office in June 2019.
“This commitment will lead to more affordable communication, greater reliability and accessibility.” Marape said the partial privatisation would lead to expansion and innovation – not job losses.
“I encourage the support of all Telikom employees and stakeholders of this privatisation programme.” Nasfund executive officer Ian Tarutia told The National in December that the superfund had signed a memorandum of understanding with its consortium partners to invest in Telikom.
Duma said the balance of Telikom’s shares would remain with the Kumul Consolidated Holdings. He said the bulk of Telikom’s business which included the mobile and landline services would be sold to the superfunds.