The National, Wednesday 24th of September, 2014
THE Government’s US$47 million loan with China’s Exim Bank for the K280 million Pacific Marine Industrial Zone project in Madang will enable work to begin in the next eight weeks.
Commerce, Trade and Industry Secretary John Andreas told people living in the impacted areas of the project in Kananam, Rempi and Baiteta that the Government would contribute US$21 million. It means that K95 million is required to start the project.
He said the $47 million loan had to be frozen after some project landowners took the Government to court over environment issues. They later withdrew the case.
Andreas said the Government had applied for the loan through the Ministry for Finance and Treasury in 2011.
“It is a soft loan that carries 1.5% to 2% interest to be repaid in 20 years,” Andreas said.
He said it was a requirement from the bank that a Chinese company would carry out the major construction work of the project. Therefore a Chinese geo-technical team will arrive in Madang in eight weeks to carry out the technical study.
“The report of the study is expected to be submitted to NEC for approval and work should begin by March 2015,” Andreas said.
He said a requirement was for the project to be developed within five years. Because three of the five have lapsed, the project must be completed within two years.