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IndyWatch PNG and NCD Feed was generated at Australian Local News IndyWatch.

Friday, 18 May

21:00

Rice is not food security for PNG; lets focus on our own staples "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Rice cultivation (Trukai)TANYA ZERIGA ALONE | EmNausPNG Blog

PORT MORESBY - A family meal in Papua New Guinea is incomplete without rice. Indeed, rice has fast become a staple for town residents in the four decades since independence.

Rice is referred to as marasin [medicine] and has the same effect on some people. One can never go wrong presenting to relatives back home a bag or packet of rice.

Rice is consumed by nearly half of the entire world population and many countries, especially in Asia, are completely dependent on rice as a staple food.

Rice is said to be the worlds food security, and in PNG there is a rush for rice cultivation.

Indeed, a 10-year domestic rice development policy was approved by the National Executive Council in 2005.

The policy aims to establish a sustainable domestic rice industry that would enhance household food security and nutrition, generate cash income for farmers, and reduce dependence on imported rice. 

The NEC decision stands even though peer-reviewed studies show rice only makes up 9% of Papua New Guineans diet while local staples make up 68% of the diet.

The government has engaged the Philippines, China, Taiwan and Japan to teach Papua New Guineans to cultivate rice, which is now grown in small scale projects in several provinces in PNG.

Hybrid rice has been introduced in the Ramu Valley in the vicinity of the Chinese Ramu Nico Company by the Chinese themselves. According to the miners, the rice is going to be food security for the local people displaced by the mine.

http://www.grain.org/hybridrice/?lid=203

The big question, however, is whether rice should be encouraged as food security for PNG?

I wont deny that I enjoy rice ever so often, especially rice from my grandmothers small rice plot. But, should PNG embrace rice as a food security over our local staple cultivars (like taro, bananas, Irish potatoes, sweet potatoes, cassava, sago and nuts)?

Rice is fast to grow and easy to cook, however, in favouring this faster growing species, we can neglect our local taro and  banana cultivars a legacy passed on from our forefathers. 

Through breeding over thousands of years, these traditional cultivars are suited for this trop...

20:00

Factoring the Pacific into Australias approach to China "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Chinese-aid-map (Lowy Institute)
Map showing scale of Chinese aid in the Pacific (Lowy Institute)

BAL KAMA | DevPolicy Blog

CANBERRA - The China-in-the-Pacific dilemma has once again hit the headlines in Australia, this time with a proposed naval base in Vanuatu.

It was promptly rejected by the Vanuatu government, but the likelihood of having Chinese military hardware on a long-term basis in the Pacific has raised significant discussion on the strategic implications for Australia and its allies.

Australia has long maintained a well-established and enduring relationship with the people of the Pacific. But Chinas influence is undeniably increasing. Its investment in soft power in particular has been a success, not only in economic terms but also in the lives of ordinary people.

Chinese infrastructure projects, while not always successful, have enabled access to government services, giving people a sense of modernity and development. Chinas growing diaspora in the Pacific is also increasingly active in community engagements and maintain a close influence on local politics.

Chinas people-to-people relations continue to expand as it becomes a first responder to disaster relief efforts, shows goodwill through local charities, and provides scholarships for Pacific students to prestigious Chinese universities.

To bridge the cultural gap, China is currently considering building Chinese language schools in the Pacific, beginning with Papua New Guinea.

Australia believes, as part of its strategic policy, that a secure Pacific means a secure Australia. Chinas emergence in the Pacific is seen by some as a threat to this state of order.

Recent rhetoric in Australia seems to be aimed towards pressuring Canberra to deepen its engagement with the Pacific as a way of countering China and projecting Australia as a partner of choice for the Pacific countries.

But these approaches are not new, considering Australias extensive awareness of Chinas influence in the region. Australias interest in the Pacific has varied over the years, b...

19:30

Sonnet 25: Ejaculation is as sure as spit "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Poetry-pencilMICHAEL DOM

There is less lyric in pyric passions
Explosive, explicit, exotic dance
Some syllabic maze to navel-gaze on,
Swallowing a shallow, callow cadence.

When the deeper you feel, the more you drool
And as high as some bird flies in the sky
There's somewhere, somehow, some similar fool
Achieving states of ecstasy as high.

Instead, use emotional propulsion 
Let this be surrendered to the rudder 
Thence to the tiller of our tongue, your pen,
Confer your soul: seek emancipation.

Ejaculation is as sure as spit
Show me your poetry, don't just write it.

19:00

Days "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

First light in PNG (RKH Photography)JEFFREY FEBI

Days are born at first light.
Dead at last light.
Less they care about memories.
Gather, don't they in anniversaries?

Often many a day is grey and boring.
Certainly, a dark day would be raining.
Without winds of determination.
Strong when winds are, it's a confrontation.

But we know a day is ours particularly.
When mild is the heat, wind is airworthy.
Streams refreshing, and noise calming.
A day is great when it's approving.

Many as the stars, may great days be.
And in their last lights, may dark days flea.
First lights herald births of days.

17:29

Port Moresby road works near completion "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Friday May 18, 2018

Major road infrastructure works in and around Port Moresby are due for completion before the APEC Leaders Summit in November, according to city manager Bernard Kipit.

In fact, three out of six major road projects will be completed well before the end of August.

Ela Beach is the first major project to be completed on schedule, due to be opened to traffic by the end of July.

That will be followed by Stanley Esplanade in town and Independence Drive in Waigani, both due to be opened for traffic by the end of August.

The rehabilitation of the Freeway, Independence Boulevard, Independence Drive and the Wards Road roundabouts will be completed by the end of October.

All projects are consistent with NCDCs four year plan.

 Kipit said there was no easy way to avoid the traffic congestion caused by the road works.

In the example of the Freeway, traffic could not be diverted around site, as the surrounding roads were not designed for heavy or oversized vehicles," he said.

"So the Freeway has had to be rehabilitated in sections.

But I want to assure the public that the end to our traffic woes is just around the corner.

The cost to NCDC and our people has been minimal as the road projects have been funded by a series of generous non-tied aid grants from China.

In the case of Ela Beach where we originally had to remove 100 trees to make way for the new-look Ela Beach.

"We are planting over 1,000 trees which will transform Ela Beach in to a real showcase for Papua New Guinea, especially with APEC Haus as part of the landscape.

Its a win for our people and a win for the environment. 

Motorists have been patient and their patience will be rewarded with Port Moresby connected with world-class roads infrastructure, the likes we have never before seen in our capital city.

It has been a case of short term pain for long term gain.

The new roads will facilitate the further growth and development of our city for the benefit of all.

I wish to reassure motorists and residents that our major road works will soon come to an end, with world class roads as the reward for our patience, planning and perseverance."

15:18

Port Moresby Governor Parkop promotes PNG as a hub for investment, tourism "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

NCD Governor Powes Parkop has flagged the country to visiting naval officers from Russia as an investment and tourism hub despite all the negative publicities overseas about PNG.

Mr Parkop said the visit by the Russian navy officers in their warship was historic, conveying his warm welcome to them.

During a dialogue hosted yesterday in Parliament, he commended them for showing interest in the city which is hosting the APEC Leaders Summit in November.

Mr Parkop said the visit was a testament of Moscow placing value in the Indo-Pacific region.

He added that the countries had a long history dating back to the settlement of Russian scientist and traveller Nikolai Miklouho-Maclay in the country from 1846 to 1888.

Governor Parkop, however, has assured the Russians that the country is full of peace-loving and friendly citizens.

When queried about the aggressiveness of our people, he gave them the assurance that our country is unique and safe.

You all are visiting the country for the first time. All of you can become our ambassador. You have heard stories about us. It is good that you came to find out for yourselves to confirm that, he said.

He stated that the country was rich in tourism spots, adding that it is the next frontier for tourist industry.

You have seen everywhere else around the world but you have not seen everything until you come to PNG, he said.

He admitted that like every other country in the world, PNG has its own share of the challenges.

Apart from tourism, he said, the country is also rich in natural resources and that he extended his warm welcome to Russian businesses to invest in the country, taking their relationship to the next level.

Captions:
1. Governor Parkop;
2. Russian Navy officers posing for a photo Governor Parkop in Parliament's State Function Room yesterday (Wednesday)

14:50

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

180518HIGH COMMISSIONER AND HIS DELEGATION ALSO VISITED THE NEW DAWN FM STUDIO IN BUIN TOWN SOUTH BOUGAINVILLE.
Caption Chris Nawa from the South Bougainville Member, High Commissioner Bruce Davies and Aloysius and Maria Laukai from New Dawn FM

180518masiu dinner for australia 001

14:40

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

180518BRUCE DAVIES ON THE BORDER

New Dawn FM News

 

 

The Australian High Commissioner to PNG, BRUCE DAVIES says Bougainville need to tighten its border with the Solomon islands.

He said after visiting KANGU wharf and seeing how close the border is he noted that Australia can assist Bougainville to work on the much talked about border post.

The High Commissioner was speaking at a farewell dinner hosted by the member for South Bougainville, TIMOTHY MASIU in Buin town last night.

He said that this was his first time to visit Bougainville and also said that it will not be the last time.

Meanwhile the Member for South Bougainville, TIMOTHY MASIU also commended the Australian High Commissioner for having confidence in the people of Buin and staying for two nights in Buin.

He said many just come for few hours and return to Arawa or Buka.

Meanwhile, New Dawn FM understands the National Government allocated TEN MILLION KINA to set up Border Posts at TASMAN, SIROVAI and KANGU to monitor the movement of cargoes and people between Bougainville and Solomon islands through these main border posts.


 
Ends

180518masiu dinner for australia 010

14:31

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

180518MASIU ON TFF NON PAYMENT
By Aloysius Laukai

The member for South Bougainville and Deputy Opposition leader, TIMOTHY MASIU has called on the Prime Minister to scrape off the TFF program and allow parents to pay School fees and Project fees.
Speaking at the Opening of a Double Classroom and a Teachers house at Buin Primary School, MR. MASIU said that it was not fair for the Government to stop parents from paying School fees and Project Fees when it cannot meet its commitment.
MR. MASIU said all his schools in South Bougainville have not received their monies for the 2018 academic year.
He said it was not good to see schools struggle to operate whilst the Government continues to tell the country that funds were ready to be sent to schools.

Ends

Buin Primary Classroom Opening170518 075

14:28

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

180518TOKE WELCOMES DELEGATION
New Dawn FM News
The local ABG member for Baubake and Minister for Community Government, JACOB TOKE in welcoming the Australian High Commissioner to Buin said that Buin was safe as Centres like Arawa and Buin.
MR. TOKE said that he was happy the High Commissioner chose to include Buin in his visit to Bougainville.
He said Australia is welcomed in Buin as they also funded the sealing of the Buin town streets lifting the standard of Buin town.
MR. TOKE also requested the Australian government to complete sealing the remaining streets in Buin town to really look like a well planned town.
He said Buin had the potential in becoming a biggest player in the development of Bougainville.
The Minister and local member made these remarks at the Opening of the Double Classroom and a Teachers house at the Buin Primary School yesterday.
Meanwhile, the Member for South Bougainville also wanted the Australian Government to consider completing the remaining unsealed streets of Buin Lewa town.
Ends

Buin Primary Classroom Opening170518 071

14:01

TABLE-S.Korea's April LNG imports up 38.5 pct y/y "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

 SEOUL, May 15 (Reuters) - South Korea's imports of liquefied natural gas
rose 38.5 percent to 3.2 million tonnes in April from a year earlier, according
to customs data released on Tuesday.
Details are as follows:
(In tonnes/ in $mmBtu)
April 2018 April 2017
Qatar 927,250/ $9.63 651,412/ $8.63
Australia 448,145/ $9.51 486,502/ $7.98
Oman 358,856/$10.82 432,344/ $8.53
Malaysia 354,175/ $8.75 177,046/ $8.20
Indonesia 314,857/ $7.92 188,602/ $5.32
Russia 259,336/ $9.02 191,648/ $7.05
Peru 235,830/ $9.68 -
United States 207,252/ $7.86 64,359/ $6.10

Angola 66,451/ $9.56 -
Brunei - 66,583/ $7.92
Guinea - 65,054/ $6.01

TOTAL 3,217,152/ $9.32 2,323,549/ $7.88

Details of the January to April imports are as follows:

(In tonnes/ in $mmBtu)
January-April 2018 January-April 2017
Qatar 5,319,250/ $9.39 4,221,948/ $8.22
Australia 2,559,715/ $9.96 2,673,610/ $8.18
United States 1,668,211/ $9.17 235,794/ $8.25
Oman 1,555,465/ $9.91 1,915,286/ $8.33
Malaysia 1,353,226/ $8.66 1,038,777/ $7.42
Indonesia 1,127,346/ $7.86 1,155,817/ $6.95
Russia 831,761/ $8.94 766,372/ $6.93
Peru 433,419/$10.04 270,661/ $8.74
Brunei 323,843/ $8.92 491,328/ $7.91
France 247,187/$10.75 -
Netherlands 132,182/$10.27 -
Nigeria 132,120/ $8.01 379,343/ $7.23
Angola 129,639/ $9.92 131,278/ $8.41
Spain 68,488/$11.26 -
Trinidad Tobago 64,630/ $9.91 110,579/ $8.22
Norway...

13:30

2018 Human Rights Dinner keynote address by Behrouz Boochani "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Dear distinguished guests, fighters for freedom and supporters of justice. Greetings to you all. I would like to acknowledge everyone and thank you for attending tonight.

This is a wonderful opportunity. It gives me great pleasure to communicate with you from Manus Island and present at this event.

I wish to extend a special thank you to Daniel Webb and the Human Rights Law Centre for giving me this valuable opportunity.

The situation on Manus Island and Nauru over the past five years should be no secret to anyone.

The aim of my talk tonight is to add a new dimension to the debates pertaining to punishment, debasement and dehumanisation of individuals held within these sites.

I will not repeat how Australian politicians have inflicted pain and suffering on the innocent refugees locked up in these prisons. The incarceration of people seeking asylum, in particular the children on Nauru, is remarkably cruel and has been exposed in many compelling ways. 

All of the documentation, witness testimonies and other evidence that have been discussed and published until now have proven conclusively that innocent people have been enduring extraordinary forms of physical, emotional and psychological torment. The fact that ten people have lost their lives on Manus Island, Nauru and Christmas Island since 2013 is a despicable crime that needs to be investigated and the perpetrators brought to justice.

No one can ignore the fact that people have been killed and thousands of lives destroyed as a result of political power plays.

The use of exile as a political tactic against vulnerable refugees is based on the construction of two concepts: national security and the national interest.

Without a doubt, Australian governments have enacted an extensive propaganda campaign which centres on a perverse account of these two notions. What should be a debate about people about human beings, about children and families has been deliberately poisoned to become a debate about borders and security. As a result, the governments playing this game have been able to manipulate and dictate the majority of public opinion, they have been able to strengthen their support base and galvanise others in support of their policies.

Both Labor and Liberal governments have accrued enormous political profit by using this tactic. Creating a false sense of national security by treating innocent victims of war and persecution as a security threat, and saying it is in the national interest to use any means to keep us out.

But how is it in the national interest to undermine Australias international reputation with these policies? And spend almost $9 billion to do it?

The fact is, Manus Island and Nauru are pivotal....

07:27

PNG Kumuls to play four test matches in 2018 "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

The PNG LNG Kumuls have four tests scheduled for 2018, the Pacific Test, the Prime Ministers XIII to become an sanctioned test match and a two-game tour by an England emerging team.
PNG Rugby Football League chief executive officer Reatau Rau who was accompanied by Kumuls coach Michael Marum made the announcement in Port Moresby yesterday.
The coming test is the Pacific test where on June 23 Papua New Guinea will take on the Fiji Bati. This will be the only test played overseas, Rau said.
He also said the change to dates for the Prime Ministers XIII match that will be held on October 6.
This date has changed from a week before the grand final to a week after the grand final and will be called the Prime Ministers XIII Test.
After the Prime Ministers XIII last year we saw that most of our top players were still in the finals series, Rau said.
The sponsors and the people have spoken about the teams performance against the Australian Prime Ministers XIII and the NRL has heard our request. They have gone back and moved the annual fixture a week after the grand final its good they heard of our views.
He added that the final two test matches will be against the emerging England team, the Knights.
The England Knights are the emerging England side and they are going to have a serious tour. They will be playing two games one on October 27, the first match will be in Lae and the second will be in Port Moresby on November 3 at the Oil Search National Football Stadium. It has been a long time since a team has done a tour in Papua New Guinea, Rau said.
Coach Michael Marum says the last time a team made a serious tour was in 2001 when the French Roosters played in Goroka and in Port Moresby.
The Knights are the future of the England side. They are just knocking on the door at the moment for a shot at the World Cup. We are proud of the England Rugby Football League for having the interest to come to our country. After the success of the World Cup last year and the Hunters and this great stadium and with the international media coverage we have had it shows the passion of rugby league in this country and we are honored to have the team visit us.
Rau added that on October 13 there will be an Emerging Kumuls team to take on the New South Wales Country Under 23 team.
The curtain raiser to that match will be the a match between a Australian Defence Force womens team and a select Confederate womens side while the Oil Search PNG Orchids will face the Australian Jillaroos on October...

07:04

PNG congratulates royal couple "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

PAPUA New Guinea has joined the rest of the world in congratulating Prince Harry on his upcoming marriage to American actor Meghan Markle tomorrow.

While many world leaders have sent wedding gifts, Governor-General Sir Bob Dadae sent a congratulatory message through the local media yesterday.

US President Donald Trump and Mrs Melania Trump, for example, would be making a contribution to one of the seven charities the royal couple had designated in lieu of gifts, a White House spokeswoman said.

The royal wedding for the Queens grandson Prince Harry and Ms Markle would be held at Windsor Castle, outside London, tomorrow evening PNG time.

Prince Harry is sixth in line to the British throne and his soon-to-be wife Meghan is an American actress of African American and Dutch-Irish descent.

I wish to convey my congratulations and best wishes to Prince Harry and Meghan on behalf of Lady Hannah, the people and Government of Papua New Guinea. The marriage of Prince Harry to Meghan is important and unique for the human race and especially for the Commonwealth.

It reflects the spirit of oneness and equality among those borne of the royal family and those outside the royal family.

Love is the essential element of a marriage, it knows no borders or boundaries to do with race, status and culture, Sir Bob said.

We thank the Queen and the Prince of Wales (Prince Harrys father Charles) for welcoming Meghan into the royal family and we wish the royal couple joy and happiness and Gods blessing and guidance in their marriage...statement

05:36

Asia or the Pacific: where will we source our agricultural labour? "IndyWatch Feed Politics.pg"

There are renewed calls for a dedicated agricultural visa. The National Farmers Federation (NFF) has been pushing for it for some time. In a 2017 submission, the NFF called for an agricultural visa with two streams: A short term (six to twelve month) stream to cater for a seasonal or unskilled workforce who may return in subsequent years; and [a] longer term stream to cater for a skilled workforce who may move within industries regions or employer groups.

And now the proposal appears to have political traction, with Nationals leader Michael McCormack at the National Press Club saying that an agricultural visa program was something Agriculture and Water Resources Minister David Littleproud was working on. Its something that we do need to address. Mr Littleproud said.

What about the Seasonal Worker Programme (SWP) which provides precisely the short-term stream the NFF is after? The NFF downplays it . NFF spokesperson Ben Rogers says: The seasonal worker program is great, but ultimately it is a foreign aid program. This mystifying remark is expanded on, though hardly clarified, by the NFF 2017 submission: [T]he focus of the [seasonal worker] scheme is not on the labour needs of farmers. Instead, its primary purpose is to contribute to the economic development of the Pacific Island countries.

Its a ridiculous criticism. The SWP is not a form of foreign aid. It is a migrant labour scheme. It aims to contribute to Australian agriculture as well as Pacific development. And the NFF itself pushed for the introduction of the SWP. The NFF also complains that that the SWP is too bureaucratic, but any new agricultural visa would have similar conditions, and the appropriate response to such a criticism is to reform the existing scheme rather than introduce another.

And now there is the Pacific Labour Scheme (PLS), starting in July of this year, which...

02:02

The Tyranny Of Distance: Corporate Harm On The Frontline In The Pacific "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Small Pacific nations are easy prey for big business, writes Amy Sinclair.

The natural wealth of Pacific nations is disappearing overseas. Unseen and unheard, the voices of Pacific Island communities on the frontline of deforestation, irresponsible mining and seabed exploitation are being overlooked and human rights abuses are going unchecked in remote rural regions. Voices from the Pacific need lifting to overcome the tyranny of distance and ensure that businesses operating in the region respect human rights.

The Pacific Ocean is a treasure trove of islands, hiding an abundance of precious resources. Cloaked in hardwood forests, rich veins of copper, bauxite and gold lie in its earth and rare mineral deposits sit buried in its sea floor.

Previously untouched, many Pacific Island countries are poised to experience escalating exploitation by foreign-owned companies headquartered in Australia, China, Malaysia and Indonesia. Without regard to international rules requiring respect for human rights in business, this threatens the sustainability of life in the Pacific for future generations.

Revenue streams from natural resources are a key source of actual, and potential, income for many Pacific nations. Cash flows from natural resource extraction can be directed to improving schools, infrastructure and health services, aiding development and relieving poverty and inequality. Many Pacific countries are well placed to fund fairer societies.

HOUSE AD: NEW MATILDA RELIES ALMOST EXCLUSIVELY ON READER SUPPORT TO SURVIVE. YOU CAN CHIP IN TO OUR CROWDSOURCING CAMPAIGN HERE.

And yet, in much of the region, its people face seemingly insurmountable challenges to ensure they receive a fair share of sovereign wealth for themselves, and their children. Their inheritance is being chopped-down, dug-up and shipped-off at an alarming rate.

States keen to attract overseas investment often unwittingly welcome irresponsible companies with open arms, grateful for injections of foreign capital into struggling agrarian economies burdened by debt. Local laws may be conveniently forgotten. Those charged with protecting the local people and enforcing regulation repeatedly turn a blind eye, sometimes colluding directly with the very companies they are employed to control.

The activities of foreign-owned extractive companies can be hugely damaging to local communities, with few benefits flowing. Mining operators are shipping tonnes of earth wholesale, to be processed offshore. Logging, another high-risk sector, occurs both legally and illegally. Licence...

01:01

wp Photos-West Papua speaking tour "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Photos-West Papua speaking tour

An informative evening. Hearing stories from West Papua and video footage of West Papuans telling their story including the tragic Pania case. The speakers told of a campaign on raising awareness of Australias aid to the Indonesian security forces which will help in raising the whole issue of West Papua. http://awpasydneynews.blogspot.com.au/2018/05/photos-west-papua-speaking-tour-sydney.html

00:57

Why Chinas debt-book diplomacy in the Pacific shouldnt ring alarm bells just yet "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Talk of Chinese debt trap diplomacy is nothing new, but a recent report by Harvard University researchers has resurrected long-held fears that Chinas debt diplomacy poses a threat to Australian interests in the Pacific.

The crux of the report is that Pacific island states like Vanuatu and Tonga, as well as other nations in Southeast Asia, are at risk of undue influence from China due to unsustainable loans theyve received for infrastructure projects.

The Australian Financial Review quoted the report as saying that while Papua New Guinea in particular has historically been in Australias orbit, its been rapidly taking on Chinese loans it cant afford to pay and offers a strategic location in addition to significant LNG and resource deposits for China.

The story follows a well-trodden path from speculation to suspicion to alarm. Last month, another media report emerged saying China had approached Vanuatu about building a permanent military presence in the South Pacific an assertion Vanuatu quickly shot down.


Interestingly, the students were supervised by Professor Graham Allison, who wrote the book Destined for War: Can America and China Escape Thucydidess Trap?. The Thucydidess Trap in the title relates to whether the US as a hegemonic power can accommodate Chinas rise without resorting to war.

But this so-called trap does not necessarily point to historical inevitability. Therefore, a thorough analysis of the dynamics in the region is needed to fully understand Chinas motivations, and what can be done to avoid conflict.

China has long been accused of using chequebook diplomacy to gain favour with nations around the world. The implication of the new debt-book diplomacy in the Harvard report is that China is using unsustainable loans to gain influence with Pacific island states that arent able to repay them.

Suffice it to say, this form of leveraging takes influence to a different level.

Historical fears

There is a long history of alarmism in Australia over the activities of strategic competitors in the Pacific. During the second world war, Japan...

00:27

Natural gas project that promised economic boom leaves PNG in worse state: report "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Isabel Esterman | Mongabay | 17 May 2018

  • Proponents of PNG LNP, an ExxonMobil-led natural gas project in Papua New Guinea, predicted it would bring massive economic benefits to landowners and to the country as a whole.
  • According to two recent reports by the Jubilee Australia Research Centre, PNGs economy is worse off than it would have been without the project.
  • Jubilee Australia also links the PNG LNG project to an upswing of violence in the areas around the plant.

In 2008, when a consortium led by ExxonMobil was drumming up support for a $19 billion natural gas extraction and processing project in Papua New Guinea, proponents of the develo...

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Thursday, 17 May

23:32

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

170518PRESIDENT SAYS THERE IS A DANGEROUS UNDER CURRENT PREVALENT ON BOUGAINVILLE.
New Dawn FM News

The ABG President Chief DR.JOHN MOMIS says it is no secret that there is a dangerous undercurrent prevalent in Bougainville today because of shortcomings on the commitment and strategy national Government has adopted on Bougainville.
Speaking at the dinner he hosted for the Australian High Commissioner to PNG, BRUCE DAVIES and his delegation in Buin last night, President Momis called on the Australian Government to intervene and talk with PNG Government to collaborate with the Bougainville Government to fully implement the Peace Agreement.
President Momis said that Bougainville was not asking for PNG to give us things on a golden platter but we do want the National Government to collaborate as both parties are required under the law to collaborate and deal with use confronting us in Bougainville so that we can have a conducive environment in which the parties can sit down and jointly implement the Peace Agreement to the full.
President Momis said that Australia has been involved in the Peace Negotiations and the restoration of services to Bougainville and knows better of our situation as we move towards the referendum that will decide the future status of Bougainville.
Ends

Bruce Davies visit 002

23:23

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

170518MOMIS ON AUSTRALIAN ASSISTANCE TO BOUGAINVILLE
New Dawn FM News
ABG President Chief DR. JOHN MOMIS last night thanked the Government and people of Australia for their continued support to Bougainville despite the ominous signs of negativity in Papua New Guinea and more so in Bougainville.
The President said that he believes that together we can overcome these problems and convert problems into prospects of development, prosperity and peace.
He made these remarks at the welcome dinner he hosted for the visiting Australian High Commissioner and his delegation in Buin last night.
PRESIDENT MOMIS said that Australia has stood with Papua New Guinea and Bougainville over a long duration of time of difficulties.
He said he hoped in the future based in our faith that there is something better beyond this life, we can establish a better basis for collaboration between Australia and Bougainville in order to achieve a mutually acceptable peaceful negotiated outcome of the Implementation of the Peace Agreement.
The ABG President said he had to acknowledge the support of Australia to the High Commissioner who was the representative of the Australian Government was in our midst tonight in Buin.

Ends

Buin Primary Classroom Opening170518 080

22:31

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

170518PRESIDENT ON MAY 17
New Dawn FM News

ABG President Chief DR.JOHN MOMIS today paid tribute to those who lost their lives on both sides of the Bougainville conflict.
He made these comments in Buin today at the Opening of two buildings funded by the Government and people of Australia.
MR. MOMIS said Bougainville has come a long way since the UDI was declared in the 1990.
He said the ABG recognizes the sacrifices of our people and gazetted May 17 as a Public Holiday throughout Bougainville.
President Momis said that because the communities in and around Buin have been busy with the visit by the Australian High Commissioners delegation he wants the people of Buin to have their public holiday tomorrow.

Ends

Buin Primary Classroom Opening170518 080

22:00

Aussie rules for humanitarians "IndyWatch Feed Politics.pg"

I have always been fascinated by how badly international humanitarians behave in an emergency response. I recognise this is a blanket statement but it seems to me that there is a process of crossing some ethical thresholds as you step off the plane; cross the border; hurry down the walkway into a humanitarian crisis. Recruitment is one of those ethical thresholds. Every agency needs to quickly expand their staff base, have national minds at the disposition of the many international staff that cant speak the language, and have representation at the plethora of meetings required to operate in a humanitarian context. All these needs have repercussions on recruitment. A most notable consequence is that agencies will do almost anything to get the best staff as quickly as possible. Sounds reasonable, right? Except ethics get left at the door and international organisations win the recruitment battle against smaller national and local organisations with bigger salaries and the allure of being part of the international machinery. More than this, international organisations poach staff.

The Australian Football League (AFL) follows rules for the recruitment of players from state football clubs such as the Victorian Football League (VFL). I am no footballer, but my understanding is that the rules are in place to ensure that state clubs (which are smaller and less well-resourced) are recognised for their role in identifying and training talented players, and to ensure that they remain financially viable institutions that continue to contribute to the footballing ecosystem. If a player is recruited from a state club, a compensation or solidarity fee is provided.

Take for example the iconic football player Adam Goodes who started his career playing for the North Ballarat Rebels, before being spotted by the Sydney Swans and being recruited to play in the AFL. As part of the recruitment process, a compensation fee was paid to the North Ballarat Rebels, recognising their role in developing Goodes talent and contributing to a great Australian sporting institution.

Contrast this with the humanitarian ecosystem where the scramble to upscale and outperform results in an ethical void. Experienced staff working in local and national organisations get poached by international organisations (including the UN and international NGOs) just as an emergency is happening at the point that they are most needed within their organisation. Often in the space of a few days, the most senior staff in national organisations hand in their notices to move to an international organisation that promises better salary, training, hours, support and progression.

The impact on national organisations is that they are constantly losing their best and brightest staff at critical moments in the midst of a complex response or as numbers of people in need are skyrocketing. There are also cost...

21:00

Mr Tomato defamation case back in national court today "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Martyn gagged
Martyn Namorong - gagged for last year's national election

KEITH JACKSON

NOOSA The I am not a tomato defamation case brought by Papua New Guinea electoral commissioner Patilias Gamato against writer Martyn Namorong returns to the national court in Port Moresby today.

The case began in an unusual way during last years PNG election when Gamato complained he was defamed in critical social media posts that likened him to a tomato.

The chaotic PNG election had resulted in wide criticism of his commissions conduct of polling and counting.

"He made some defamatory statements and also called my surname, which is Gamato, as 'tomato'," the ABC reported Gamato saying about Namorong at a press conference.

"I don't look like a tomato, I'm a human being. He put a big tomato on my head, what if he did that to you?"

Mr Gamato is seeking punitive and aggravated damages for stress, anxiety and loss of reputation.

National court justice Collin Makail ordered Gamatos statement of claim be published in newspapers and granted an order restraining Namorong from further publishing defamatory remarks the blogger made against Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato on Facebook and Twitter.

Namorong then ceased political commentary for the rest of the election period while publishing a photo of himself in a gagged state.

Gamatos full statement of claim, signed by Kemnonga Robin Kawat of Kawat Lawyers, as published in The National newspaper said in part:

On or about 27 June 2017 in the Defendant wrote or published in his tweeter account by calling the Plaintiff as Mr Tomato, the defendant maliciously wrote and published in his tweeter account and these has gone viral on social media in particular Facebook by tarnishing the surname of the Plaintiff (Gamato) . He is not a vegetable.

...

20:00

Losing Kokoda: $50 million & dishonouring our military heritage "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Trekking Kokoda (Charlie Lynn)
Crossing a stream on the Kokoda Trail - too little to show for $50 million of Australian taxpayers' money

CHARLIE LYNN | Spectator Australia

SYDNEY - The blackbirding curse is as damaging to Papua New Guineas adventure tourism industry as the resource curse is to mining and exploration.

Blackbirding was a term given to the coercion of native people from PNG to work as cheap labour in Queenslands sugar plantations in the latter part of the nineteenth century. When the extent of the exploitation became known it was outlawed as a form of slavery.

The resource curse refers to the paradox that countries with an abundance of natural resources tend to have less economic growth, less democracy and worse development outcomes than countries with fewer natural resources.

Over the past decade 45,000 Australians from all walks of life have trekked across the Kokoda Trail. Their reasons are many and varied but the wartime significance combined with a sense of adventure in the land of the unexpected is the most compelling motivation.

Kokoda has now surpassed Gallipoli as a priority bucket list item.

Prospective trekkers become self-absorbed as they research trekking companies, camping gear, training methods and the wartime history of the campaign.

They learn of the loyal sacrifice of fuzzy-wuzzy angels those legendary wartime carriers who supported our troops and they look forward to sharing the experience with their descendants who will be employed to get them safely across the trail.

They expect these young guides and carriers will be properly cared for by the trekking company they engage to complete their trek. They expect that government will do its job and put in place rules and regulations to protect them against exploitation.

They expect Australia will ensure the wartime history of the Kokoda campaign will be protected. They expect that local subsistence villagers will receive their fair share of benefits from the emerging trekking industry.

Unfortunately......

19:00

Is China using 'debtbook diplomacy' to achieve its strategic aims? "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Country_vulnerability_mapBEN WESTCOTT | CNN | Edited

HONG KONG - The Chinese government is leveraging billions of dollars in debts to gain political leverage with developing countries across Asia and the Pacific, a new report presented to the US State Department claims.

The independent report, written by a pair of Harvard University scholars, identified 16 countries targeted by the Chinese government for "debtbook diplomacy.

According to the report, in some cases the huge debts grow to a size too large to pay back, allowing Beijing to leverage the loans to "acquire strategic assets or political influence over debtor nations."

This could allow the Chinese government to extend its influence across the Indian Ocean and the Pacific, encircling India and Australia as well as helping to consolidate its position in the South China Sea, the report said.

Last month, Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull said he viewed "with great concern" any foreign military bases being built in the South Pacific, following reports Beijing was in talks with Vanuatu to host Chinese forces.

According to the new report, Vanuatu, just 2,500 kilometers off Australia's coast, has taken at least $270 million in Chinese loans in the past decade, worth 35% of its GDP. Both China and Vanuatu have strongly denied there were ever discussions over a Peoples Liberation Army military presence on the island.

A US State Department official told CNN it encouraged China to promote and uphold internationally accepted best practices in infrastructure development and funding.

"We need to ensure recipients have options that allow them to retain their sovereignty and future control of their economies," the official said.

According to the report, there are a number of ways in which Beijing and state-owned enterprises leverage debt to help China's strategic aims.

In one case, infrastructure built with Chinese loans, has then been leased back to Chinese interests to pay off the original debt.

In 2017, an unprofitable Sri Lankan port built with billion-dollar loans from Beijing was leased to Chinese state-owned firms for 99 years to help repay the country's debts.

The report's co-author Sam Parker said there were concerns these ports could be used by Chinese n...

18:05

Natural gas project that promised economic boom leaves PNG in worse state: report "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

In 2008, when a consortium led by ExxonMobil was drumming up support for a $19 billion natural gas extraction and processing project in Papua New Guinea, proponents of the development predicted it would underpin the countrys economy for decades. Production began in 2014, and now reaches approximately 7.9 million tonnes of liquefied natural gas per year. However, according to two recent reports by advocacy group Jubilee Australia Research Centre, the PNG LNG project has not only exacerbated conflict and inequality in the Papua New Guinea highlands, it has also failed to produce the promised benefits. According to Jubilee Australias analysis, PNGs economy would be better off if the gas had been left in the ground. Predicted economic impacts of the PNG LNG project compared to actual impacts (based on Jubilee Australias analysis of underlying economic trends). While exports have exceeded expectations, GDP growth has been slower than forecast and income, employment and government spending have dropped. Image courtesy of Jubilee Australia. Big promises When pitching the project, developers made big promises about the economic and social benefits the megaproject would bring to the country. One influential 2008 study, an economic impact analysis commissioned by ExxonMobil and authored by Australian consultants ACIL-Tasman (now ACIL-Allen), predicted the project would bring a tremendous windfall not only to shareholders, but also to the people of PNG. It forecast the overall size of the countrys economy would nearly double, household incomes would rise by 84 percent, and employment increase by 42 percent. Backers of the project

14:10

Russian Warship arrives in Port Moresby, PNG "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

A Russian Navy training ship sailed into Port Moresby with 234 naval cadets aboard yesterday morning.

The visit, a first by Russia, had been described as a historic business port call between Russia and Papua New Guinea.

This is the first time in 50 years that a Russian naval vessel has visited our shores, said Papua New Guinea Defence Force chief of staff captain (Navy) Philip Polewara, who was at port to welcome the 7000-tonne Perekop training ship.

Aboard were fifth-year naval cadets from the St Petersburg naval institute of Russia who are on a two-month navigational training that started in April.

According to Capt Polewara, the 40-year-old ship had passed through the Baltic Sea, Indian Ocean and Pacific Ocean and was then destined for Vladivostok in Russia.

The ship arrived at 10.30am and Capt Polewara was left impressed after a brief exchange of pleasantries and a short tour with the captain of the ship and the head of the naval institute vice-admiral Vladimir Sokolov.

They still employ some of the earliest forms of navigation, using the celestial navigation and thats something we the navy can learn, and as people all we know is that Russia is a big country, home of the polar bears, it is up north, he said.

Capt Polewara said Russia was not only in Europe but also extended to the Pacific that was why it was often described by the international media as showing increased interest in the Pacific.

The Perekop cadets three-day visit include city tours, cultural visits, friendly sports with the PNG Defence Force, and courtesy meetings with the government.

According to The Australian newspaper, the training warship Perekop is a part of the Baltic fleet of the Russian Navy and is equipped with a modern radio-technical and navigational equipment as well as combat armament.

The warship, which is here until Saturday, will be open to the public today at 1pm at the old wharf in town. Post Courier/PACNEWS/PNG TODAY

13:27

The University of Goroka and Police Department collaboration Project "IndyWatch Feed Politics.pg"

POSSIBLE AREAS OF COLLABORATION  BETWEEN POLICE DEPARTMENT AND UNIVERSITY OF GOROKA  IN 2018
-------------------------------------------------------------
Introduction...
This is the beginning of a discourse or discussions between the Human Resources Management Section of the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary (focusing on the training facility at Bomana) on the one hand, and I'm the other the University of Goroka. This interaction commenced in a humble or modest way (unofficial though)  between Chancellor Joseph Sukwianomb and a couple of Police Officers, (who for reasons shall remain nameless).
A small beggining...
The University Chancellor himself read in recent weeks from the newspaper stories of police recruits who were passed out from training acted in such manner (reminiscent of the Secondary Schools culture of induction into the pack). These trainees who passed out,were to have been deployed were considered dismissed. The Chancellor hinted that  it was perhaps time to consider suggesting in the way police recruitment, training and behavioural change instructions are given to the new intake by the Royal PNG Constabulary. A rethink is now necessary, given all that has been given by so many people and their organisations both from without and within PNG.
The way forward...
It is the considered view of the Chancellor that a collaboration and cooperation between the Police Department and the University of Goroka is necessarily and even urgent ever more than before. There are vital areas to be discussed or explored for the mutual support and benefits to the parties,if some agreements are reached. The Chancellor suggested that the first item to be considered and acted upon is to get the police hierarchy (especially in HR Division)  to meet formally with the Secretary and his officers from the Department of Higher  Education, Research, Science and Technology. The reasons are many  but one thing is clear. That is that since the passing of the Higher Education (General Provisions) Act 2014, all education and training provisions in PNG through any recognised institutions come under the supervision and control or scrutiny of the Board of Control established under the Higher Education Act from the date of the enforcement of the provisions of the Act.
This, the Police Training College at Bomana comes under DHERST in areas of curriculum, staff or lecturers or instructors competencies, certification, career pathways etc. Importantly, is the need to comply with the PNG National Qualifications Framework. There is work to be done in these areas in the three disciplined forces, but first is to start with the police force.
Areas of collaboration and cooperation...
The current areas that could draw the attention of the University of Goroka is to start a preliminary discussions on a number of key areas, and these i...

13:03

Vanimo Free Economic Zone ( with John Tekwie) "IndyWatch Feed Politics.pg"

Friday 4 May 2018
This is a statement that follows an initial brief discussions with an officer who is helping with the work related to the Vanimo Free Economic Zone in the Sandaun Province. Many years ago at the University of Papua New Guinea, I and some of my academic colleagues were discussing a proposal where PNG could establish what was thought at that time as Northern Economic Zone or hub.  This hub would free up the idea of provinces in the north consisting of Morobe, Making, East and West Sepik, and even Manus into a political marriage or consolidation into a economic block to harness all the resources that are available. So that infrastructures like the airports, wharves and road network established and operating. A "crazy" idea of building railway network was also discussed even way back in the mid eighties, among these academics. The idea did not gain any ground or did anyone tried to transmit those ideas to ambitious politicians until someone came along years later.
From what I know  is that former Governor for Sandaun, Mr John Tekwei was and early initiator and a great advocate of the revived thinking about the Free Northern Economic Zone. Just there months ago in February I happen to come across  Mr Tekewei who has been rallying support from people in power to revive the idea of establishing the free trading zones in some strategic locations. Vanimo and Lorengau in Manus were the two that Mr Tekwei mentioned, at least to me anyway. I was very interested and hinted that he should continue to pursue his dream,  and he replied  that he would do but he would need inputs from me and others. In the same venue, after talking to Mr Tekewi,  I met Governor for East  Sepik,  who said to me, before I could talk about the reason why I was there in the first place to meet and talk to him. The subject was about early childhood education trying of teachers for East Sepik. The governor said he wanted to introduce Bahamas into the curriculum of early childhood education in the East Sepik in the kiddie schools. In doing so  the Sepik people will be better able to interact in economic activities across the border with the most populous neighbouring country,  Indonesia. This idea from Governor Bird goes to support the idea of economic integration on our part as a country before we can reach out to other larger economies like Japan, Korea, China or even Indonesia.
And so an invitation for me to join like-minded Papua New Guineans on a crusade to find a way, away from the norm is indeed an honour. It is an opportunity so rare to relook at our sovereignty by revisiting and interpreting the preamble of our constitution, the 8 point plan, and the most recent one being the PNG Vision 2050.
In having said in so many words as alluded above, Im indeed very honoured to submit my expression of interest to join people of different professions...

12:48

TiikiiembShiiemb "IndyWatch Feed Politics.pg"

The Prime Minister, Peter O'Neill met today with the Chancellors and Vice chancellors of all state universities, which included the Chancellor said or Chair of Divine Word University. The convener of the meeting was the Minister for Higher Education, Research and Science and technology , Hon. Pila Niningi.

The Prime Minister said that there is not enough money to go around to meet every demand. He urged universities to consider ways of generating income to supplement what little  there is coming from the Government coppers. The Prime Minister also said that there will be no new universities building ,other than the completion of the Western Pacific University at Ialibu. Instead, he said universities must plan for expansion from the existing universities  especially those owned and funded  by the state. The Prime Minister planned to have another follow up meeting, to be arranged by the Higher Education Minister, Hon. Niningi.

12:35

Chancellor Sukwianomb says he wants to build Highlands Medical School at the University of Goroka "IndyWatch Feed Politics.pg"


The University of Goroka Chancellor, Joseph Sukwianomb on Friday 11 May 2018 made the first public statement in relation to the building of a new Highlands School of Medicine and a Teaching Hospital as part of the School to be the expansion of the University of Goroka long term plan.  This follows  statement and urging from the Prime Minister, Peter O'Neill  when met with the state universities Chancellors and Vice Chacellors on the 18 of January 2018.

The Chancellor made this first public statement at the graduation ceremony held in Mt Hagen when he presided over the 3rd Graduation in Mt Hagen where 14 students  from Western Highlands, Enga and Southern Highlands graduated with Bachelor of Education in School Management.  Students who graduated, they studied by distant mode, under the University of Goroka Institute of Distant and Flexible mode. The students were enrolled in In-service Training that took minimum of two years;  sometimes this can take longer.

The University of Goroka graduation on Mt Hagen was attended by Deputy Governor who represented the Governor for Western Highlands, Hon. Paias Wingti and the Provincial Government of Western Highlands. Chancellor. The Governor for WHP is commended for articulating and realising the Pillar 1 of the PNG Vision 2050, said the Chancellor. Chancellor Sukwianomb further said the Nation of PNG  can not go wrong if every little  from the Prime Minister down do what Governor Wingtips is doing in his province. 

10:44

Japan and PNG sign Air Service agreement "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Papua New Guinea and Japan officially signed Wednesday the exchange of notes on the revised air service agreement between the two countries.

Papua New Guinea Foreign Minister Rimbink Pato and his counterpart Japan Foreign Minister Taro Kono officially signed the instruments at the Likura House in Tokyo.

Pato in his address to the media and official dinner delegates said that this was a very important document which will improve trade and investment and the overall relations between PNG and Japan.

He said that this will also enable Air Niuginis service to Japan further enhance and strengthen connectivity between Japan, PNG and the Pacific Island countries.

Air Niugini presently has twice weekly services presently to Narita from Port Moresby, Pato said.

This third weekly service will result in inclusion of the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) which means many of our exports particularly tuna from FSM and PNG will have accessibility to the markets of Japan and of course inflow of tourists from Japan through to the rest of the Pacific island countries, particularly at a time like this when we move into a closer cooperation with Japan and Pacific Island nations, Pato said.

Japan is a very important partner of PNG and of course Japan is the second largest trading partner for PNG after Australia and in the overall partnership, theres so many issues and challenges that Japan works very closely with Papua New Guinea and together we have an important partnership as we reach out together for PNG.

The signing of the air Services Agreement, the amendments relating thereto will enable our partnership to connect better between ourselves in trade and investment, people to people contract as well as to the rest of the Pacific so I am very well pleased and privileged to be here on behalf of our country, we have been talking to Prime Minister Abe-San and the former Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida-San-when we last met in DA Nang in Vietnam, I am so glad, Pato said.

Japan Foreign Minister Kono on the other hand said: With the revisit, we hope the number of flights between Japan and PNG will be increased and also strengthen connectivity between Japan and the Pacific Island countries..

SOURCE: POST COURIER//PACNEWS/PNGTOday

10:40

Intense Use Of Digital Technologies Vital "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

The ultimate aim of the research and policy presentations during APEC study centers consortium conference (ASCCC) is to enhance peoples livelihood within respective economies.

In concluding the ASCCC yesterday, conference chairman and director of the PNG National Research Institute, Dr Osborne Sanida said the intense use of digital technologies are important for creating opportunities for inclusive growth and social and economic development.

We had good discussions on innovation and technology. Technology is vital for inclusive growth and development so the question is how we can promote opportunities that technology brings and also address the constraints so that we can use it in a positive way.

Going forward, this conference will have both immediate and non-immediate results, immediately, the conference output will be presented as a report to the SOM Chair.

The report will also be given to PNG APEC Study Centre and to Chile as the next host of APEC, said Dr Sanida.

The theme of the conference Inclusive growth opportunities in an increasingly connected region included four sub themes:

Regional economic integration and connectivity;

Structural reform and competition;

Digitalisation; and

Innovation and technology

There were 74 abstracts submitted for the conference, 25 were selected and presented at the two day conference....read more on PNG Technology site: PNG eHow

06:10

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Procession by officials to the Stage for the Opening Ceremony today

Buin Primary Classroom Opening170518 022

06:03

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Picture of the Three Bedroom Teacher's House at Buin Primary School

Buin Primary Classroom Opening170518 012

05:43

NEW DAWN ON BOUGAINVILLE "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

170518HIGH COMMISSIONER OPENS DOUBLE AT BUIN PRIMARY SCHOOL.

The Australian High Commissioner to PNG, Bruce Davies today opened another Double Classroom and a Teacher's House at one of the oldest Primary Schools on Bougainville, the Buin Primary School.

The School is one of the first Government run schools to be established in South Bougainville and today became one of a few schools on Bougainville with a solar powered Classroom.
In his speech today he said Australia will continue assist PNG and Bougainville with infrastructures for Education and Health and Law and Justice sector like in the past.

He said the assistance are delivered according to the priority of local governments.

High Commissioner, Bruce Davies also said that Australia will also assist in areas that can further support the ABG with Programs that the ABG sees as its priorities at the moment.

The team will continue with their visit in South Bougainville before returning to Port Moresby at the end of this week.

Ends

Pic 1

05:35

PNG SIM card registration extension "IndyWatch Feed Politics.pg"

PNG Communications Minister Sam Basil has decided to extend the deadline for mobile phone subscriber identity module (SIM) card registration by over two months, to July 31 2018.

This will give more time for citizens to register their mobile phones, thus ensuring that they are able to make phone calls, send and receive texts messages, and so on, after the new deadline is reached.

According to Loop PNG, Digicel, which has the bulk of the customers in the country, has registered over 1.4 million subscribers. This leaves roughly 1.1 million subscribers on that network who are still to register. Digicel has been offering incentives to customers to register, such as free air time.

The other two telecommunication companies are also continuing to register their customers, and attempting to inform customers about the need to register through radio advertisements and other means.

Various countries have introduced mandatory SIM card registration. In neighbouring Indonesia, the deadline was February 28, 2018, and then over 100 million SIM cards were partially blocked, before a further deadline of April 30, 2018. In that case, registration could be done online, through text messaging, at a call centre, or in person. However, in PNG, people need to register in person as the country does not have an identification database. Mobile phone users in PNG need to visit a store or an agent and have their photograph taken as part of the registration process.

According to The National, the devastating earthquake that hit several PNG highlands provinces in February, was one reason why the Minister decided to further extend the registration deadline. The initial deadline was...

03:43

Fiji landowners to receive 80% of mining royalties "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Big Win For Landowners

Losirene Lacanivalu | Fiji Sun | 17 May 2018

They will, for the first time, get royalties from mineral mining 80% and Govt retains 20%

All landowners will, for the first time, be able to access a fair share of royalties from mineral mining.

This comes after the FijiFirst Government managed to get the Fare Share of Mineral Royalties Bill passed and enacted in Parliament last night.

Acting Prime Minister and Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum said under the new Act landowners would receive 80 per cent of all the royalties while the State would retain only 20 per cent.

He said once the Act came into place, the first payment of royalty of around $1m would be made from the Trust to the landowners.

The landowners referred to were owners of freehold land, iTaukei landowners, Rotuman and Rabi Island landowners, he said.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said it had always been known that all minerals belonged to the State and surface land belo...

02:04

Haiveta not happy with delay in paying landowners "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

The National aka The Loggers Times | May 16, 2018

Gulf Governor Chris Haiveta has called on Oil Search to own up to the fact that it fast-tracked processes in an effort to capitalise on the countrys resources while leaving the landowners stranded with little possibility of receiving royalties promptly.

He said company chairman Rick Lee was out of line during Fridays annual general meeting in Port Moresby when discussing landowner groups and landowner identification processes.

The entire reason we are now facing the issues with the delayed royalty payments is based squarely on Oil Searchs lack of ability to correctly communicate and inform both Exxon and the Government of their experience of the process and the requirements of the Oil and Gas Act, Haiveta said in a statement.

Oil Search must accept that they continue to generate enormous profits from PNG, they receive beneficial tax credits, yet they are trying to push the blame to the Government for their lack of corporate governance in managing the process when it comes to the landowner identification.
...

00:46

Union Boss Sally McManus Demands Inquiry After Building Royal Commission Charges Collapse "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

The nations most powerful union official has demanded an inquiry into why two union officials were charged with blackmail after the Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption, only for the charges to be withdrawn almost three years later.

Yesterday, the Victorian Department of Prosecutions asked that extortion charges leveled against Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) officials John Setka and Shaun Reardon in 2015 be dismissed.

Melbourne magistrate Charles Rozencwajg replied, I think its a very sensible decision.

The case stemmed from allegations that during a meeting with senior officials with Boral, the pair asked that concrete not be supplied to Melbourne worksites run by construction firm Grocon, amid concerns about worker safety. Mr Setka is the CFMEUs Victorian secretary, Mr Reardon is the state assistant secretary.

Explosive evidence presented at their committal hearing this week suggested senior figures within the Turnbull and Abbott Governments were speaking directly with Boral executives prior to any allegations being formally raised.

HOUSE AD: NEW MATILDA RELIES ALMOST EXCLUSIVELY ON READER SUPPORT TO SURVIVE. YOU CAN CHIP IN TO OUR CROWDSOURCING CAMPAIGN HERE.

Head of the Australian Council of Trade Unions, Sally McManus, this morning came out swinging.

I welcome the withdrawal of these charges they should never have been laid, Mc Manus said.

The possibility that members of the Abbott/Turnbull Government were closely consulting with Boral over events that led to these discredited charges is deeply disturbing. This possibility should be fully investigated.

This is the same Government that orchestrated the ROC raid, wasted $80 million on a union witchhunt, and is the successor of the Coalition government that conspired to ruin the lives of waterfront workers 20 years ago, she added, a reference to the infamous Patrick Stevedores dispute led by retired Liberal Minister Peter Reith.

It is not acceptable for any government to attack the elected representatives of working people in order to advance their political agenda.

John Setka and Shaun Reardon have stood up for working people in the Victorian c...

00:41

Call for clarity on PNG seabed mining project "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Seabed mining machinery Photo: Mike Smith

Radio New Zealand | 16 March 2018

The MP for Namatanai in Papua New Guinea says more information is needed about the impacts and benefits of seabed mining.

The Solwara 1 Project, in which Canadian company Nautilus Minerals plans to extract gold and copper from under the Bismarck Sea, is facing a growing chorus of opposition from local community groups over environmental concerns.

Nautilus has yet to complete equipment requirements for beginning mining, and has seen investors recently withdraw from the project.

The MP, Walter Schnaubelt, said too much remained unknown about the environmental impacts of seabed mining.

Im of the view that of course its going to be something new, yes, maybe some unknowns are going to happen, he said.

But that doesnt mean that we jus...

00:34

Oil Search denies blaming PNG govt for project problems "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

There have been complaints of a lack of benefits coming from the LNG project. Photo: RNZI / Johnny Blades project

Someone is not happy with Oil Search but this kind of back-tracking is not going to fool anyone!

Truth is they are all to blame Oil Search, Exxon Mobil and the PNG government

Radio New Zealand | 16 May 2018

The oil and gas company Oil Search denies that it blamed Papua New Guineas government for non-payment of benefits from the LNG gas project.

This comes after statements by the Oil Search chairman at its Annual General Meeting last week acknowledging landowner frustrations over project payouts.

Oil Search claimed its chairmans comments were mis-reported.

In a new statement it said that during the annual meeting, the company outlined the need to ensure royalty payments and other benefits owing to landowners were distributed as soon as practicable.

Oil Search said it was worki...

00:25

Isi Henry Returns As Samarai-Murua MP "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

May 17, 2018

SAMARAI-Murua MP Isi Henry Leonard has remained as MP- elect after defeating close rival Gordon Wesley for the second time at the end of the National Court-ordered recount.

The returning officer presented the recount results on Tuesday afternoon before trial judge Deputy Chief Justice Sir Gibbs Salika who then endorsed the result, the judges office confirmed this yesterday.

The recount results saw Mr Leonard scoring 6257 votes ahead of Mr Wesley, who was the petitioner and former MP, with 6230 votes.

Sir Gibbs had ordered the recount on March 28 after upholding Mr Wesleys petition on grounds of errors and omissions by the Electoral Commission.

Sir Gibbs then found that at the end of the count for the first preference votes, Mr Wesley scored 5198 votes which was reduced to 5042 going into elimination.

He said the error made without proper explanation would have affected the election result in which Mr Leonard was declared duly elecedt at 6342 votes after passing the absolute majority by 46 votes, ahead of Mr Wesley with 6249 votes.

Wednesday, 16 May

23:34

Glyphosate Hurts Gut Microbiome, Genes and Sexual Development at Safe Dose "IndyWatch Feed Niugini"

Roundup Weedkiller Hurts Gut Microbiome, Genes and Sexual Development at

By Heather Callaghan

Glyphosate-based herbicides like Monsantos Roundup are used the world over. In fact, Roundup is still the most popular and widely used weedkiller in the entire world. Pesticide propagandists are fond of leaning on the idea of safe dose, but can there really be a safe dose for a substance that causes breast cancer at parts per trillion?

A new study shows some startling, adverse health affects in mice given glyphosate in doses at levels considered safe by regulatory agencies. This news is more concerning now since recent revelations that glyphosate is in most of our food, FDA emails show.

Three peer-reviewed accepted manuscripts from the pilot phase of the Global Glyphosate Study are available online today (May 16), reports GM Watch. They will be published in the prestigious scientific journal Environmental Health in open access format later in May.

...

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