OBG report to examine PNG’s fiscal policies

A forthcoming report by the global research and consultancy firm Oxford Business Group (OBG) will explore PNG’s efforts to encourage growth across the non-extractive industries next to new developments in the extractive sectors.

It will also consider whether the country’s year as chair of APEC delivered the desired economic results in 2018 and beyond.  

The Report: Papua New Guinea 2019 will examine the government’s new fiscal policies, which are being formulated against a backdrop of rising commodity prices and will spearhead its bid to tackle the challenges the country faces, such as foreign currency shortages and high levels of public debt.

It will also highlight the key role that improved infrastructure will play in attracting new investment to the country and the opportunities that a sizeable pipeline of projects, ranging from roads and power plants to internet cables, is likely to generate for businesses keen to play a part in PNG’s development, generating diversification.

In addition, there will be special coverage of the latest developments in the submarine cable linking PNG, the Solomon Islands and Australia, which is expected to be operational before the end of 2019, making use of the landing side constructed by the new PNG Kumul domestic submarine cable project– a pivotal step towards preparing the country for cheaper internet prices, increased competition and eventually, digital transformation.

Other topics set for analysis include announcements for major projects in both the mining and energy sector such as the country’s second major Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) project, which is being rolled out in partnership with France’s Total, PNG’s Oil Search and US oil giant ExxonMobil, following the three companies’ announcement in February of plans to increase annual production by some 8m tonnes by adding three new trains.

The Investment Promotion Authority (IPA) has signed a further memorandum of understanding (MoU) with OBG for its forthcoming publication. Under the MoU, the IPA will help OBG to research and produce The Report: Papua New Guinea 2019.

Commenting after the signing, Clarence Hoot, Managing Director, IPA, said he looked forward to building on the authority’s longstanding partnership with OBG and bringing the many international investors who visited PNG in 2018, or followed events from abroad, up to date on the latest opportunities emerging there.

“With Papua New Guinea’s plans to diversify its economy and move towards self-sufficiency taking shape, the need to let business leaders know how they can contribute to the country’s development in areas such as tourism, ICT, industry and agriculture has never been greater,” he said.

“Oxford Business Group has documented Papua New Guinea’s changing economic landscape in detail over the years, providing the international investment community with the accurate and reliable data they need to make informed decisions. I’m delighted that we will participate in its research once again at a time when the country remains firmly in the spotlight.”

Tjeerd Ritmeester, OBG’s Editorial Manager, agreed that APEC events had provided PNG with a useful platform for briefing investors on the opportunities that the shift in economic direction was producing nationwide.

“Having faced the challenges of lower global commodity prices and a slowdown in international trading activity in recent years, Papua New Guinea is moving to broaden its economic base and become less import-dependent,” he said. “The authority spearheads national efforts to relay the many investment opportunities available here to international business leaders and our reports have undoubtedly benefited from its input over the years. I’m thrilled that we will have its representatives on board for our 2019 project.”

The Report: Papua New Guinea 2019 will mark the culmination of more than six months of field research by a team of analysts from Oxford Business Group. It will be a vital guide to the many facets of the country, including its macroeconomics, infrastructure, banking and other sectoral developments.

The Report: Papua New Guinea 2019 to be produced with the IPA will be available online and in print.

Press release