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By Staff Reporter : PNG Today

PNG's Hides Gas Plant shut down

The Hides Gas Plant in Hela province was forced to shut today by angry landowners after waiting for a long time to get their agreed royalty payments from shipment of LNG Gas.

In response to this the Minister for Petroleum and Energy Nixon Duban acknowledged the petition given to Exxon Mobil last Friday outlining the issues of concern and extends his call to the concerned landowners to refrain from doing anything to disrupt the process of the LNG project in the area.

“I want to appeal to the landowners that we have a big investment here and we cannot derail any future prosperity,” the Minister said.

Duban added that this matter is not new and that the reason why the royalty payments are being held back is due to the Landowner Beneficiary Identification Program or the Clan Vetting Process that needs to be completed first. He explained that the process is taking time because it is important to properly complete the process to identify the correct landowners that are going to benefit from the royalty payments so to avoid any landowner issues that might pop up in the future that may hinder the multibillion Kina LNG Project.

“What the landowners are going to get are all set and therefore, it is vital the program is done so the right people are paid their royalties.”

Duban also confirmed that the proceeds of the LNG shipment are all parked in the Central Bank awaiting everything to be completed first before it can be released. This also includes the funds for the Development Levis which is about K135million, similar to the amount of the royalties.

Meantime, an advance team from the Department of Petroleum and Energy will be heading out to Hela tomorrow (Tuesday 09th) to scope out the situation on ground and engage in talks with the protesting landowners.The team will be lead by the Department’s Acting Secretary Mr. David Manau and the purpose is to resolve the situation and allow for further dialogue with the landowners regarding the issues they raised in the petition that was give to Exxon Mobil.

Following this a ministerial team led by the Minister himself will be heading out to Hela on Wednesday to continue talks with landowners.

Picture: Minister Duban (right) sitting next to Deputy Secretary Manau at a press conference this afternoon

Posted by Staff Reporter : PNG Today on 4:26 AM. Filed under , , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Share this Article

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