PNG web sites seem to come and go. The fact of life is that it costs
money to host a web site and there is not much return on the outlay
to most businesses in PNG. If you do click on a link and use the services
or even have some comments to make then please contact the people at
the relevant web site and let them know so they at least know that someone
has gained some value from their efforts. If you are so inclined them
mention that you heard about them from this web site. -- The PNG
of a website or service does not necessarily mean that this newsletter
endorses the website or service
Bougainville Copper Mine
The tax office (Internal Revenue Commission) is still attempting to
recover back taxes owed by Bougainville Copper Limited (BCL). The Internal
Revenue Commission has claimed that BCL has sent K89 million overseas
to avoid paying the correct tax on the money.
Wewak Guest House
A web site developed by Michele at Bluefin Consulting Ltd is now online
advertising the Wewak Guest House -- http://www.wewakguesthouse.com
Stories About PNG
-- A Family Matter by Chips Mackellar -- just one of many articles that
can be found at -- http://www.pngaa.net
Francis Ona Dead
The president of the Autonomous Bougainville has confirmed that the
reclusive leader of the Bougainville secessionist movement has died.
The self-styled leader, Francis Ona, succumbed to an illness lasting
two weeks on the 24th of July 2005. The Autonomous Government of Bougainville
is planning a state funeral for Mr Ona. The United Nations has offered
help with flying the body from Panguna to Buka provided his people allow
The Australian army squadron is helping to carry out maintenance work
at the Taurama Barracks along side 40 PNG soldiers. Recently the PNG
defence force has been helping to repair Government House but it seems
that it cannot maintain its own buildings without help. 63 men and two
women from the Construction Squadron usually based in Brisbane, Australia
arrived in Port Moresby recently to carry out the refurbishment of the
barrack's 15-bed medicals centre, including a laundry facility. They
will also help with improvements to the mess, help construct a new ablution
block and construct 12 offices for the barrack's headquarters. The work
is expected to be completed by the middle of September at a cost of
Another person from PNG has been caught for attempting to take too
much cash out of Australia without declaring it. This time it was the
political head of the oil and gas rich Southern Highlands Province.
The politician has been placed on a six-month good behaviour bond for
exceeding the allowable amount of AUD10,000 by over AUD3,000.
Telikom PNG has just celebrated its fiftieth birthday but many people
do not think they have much to celebrate. The service has steadily decreased
since its silver jubilee in 1980.
Currently PNG is rated one of the lowest among other Pacific Island
nations in telecommunications that comprises of the fixed line segment,
mobile and Internet segment and television segment and the lowest fixed-line
density. PNG has 700 payphones, by far the lowest per capita phone coverage
of all Pacific nations. PNG also ranks with the lowest in internet penetration,
less than one per cent of the population, while its internet access
costs are among the most expensive in the Pacific Island Nations States.
PNG also ranks among the lowest of television receivers in the Pacific
Islands Nations with a TV penetration accounting for less than ten per
cent of the population.
The mobile phone segment of the Telikom company have come out to say
that now you can expect severe congestion on not only Fridays but also
Thursday for the mobile phone network. Basically customers are being
told to make calls on other days because there is no solution in sight!
Pacific Mobile Communications, a wholly owned subsidiary of Telikom
PNG, have said that the congestion with the mobile phone services every
Thursday and Friday was due to the limited number of lines available
to them from their parent company - Telikom PNG.
Illegal Satellite Equipment
The Collins and Leahy Company trading as Associated Distributors in
Lae have been fined K6,000 for illegally installing and using unlicenced
satellite equipment. Many companies are frustrated with the poor infrastructure
being provide by Telikom PNG and resorting to installing satellite equipment
to bypass the Telikom equipment.
Illegal Border Trade
The Member of Parliament for Ambunti-Drekikir has said that the land
border crossing from PNG into Indonesia is a booming place for the shipment
of guns, pornography and the sale of vanilla and cocoa. He said that
illegal activities were rampant at the border town of Wutung on the
PNG side and Merauke and Bewani on the Indonesian side. The town of
Wutung has become so prosperous that it is now a town of supermarkets.
New Teller Machines
The Bank South Pacific has installed an automatic teller machine at
the Port Moresby General Hospital for the benefit of staff and patients.
This was advertised as being the first ATM outside BSP premises but
for many years Garden City in Boroko has had two machines on the ground
floor of the shopping centre. The bank has said that it will be installing
a total of 50 new machines around the country - 30 of these in Port
Moresby over the coming 12 - 18th months.
If you are unfortunate enough to bank with the Bank South Pacific (BSP)
then maybe the heading for this item should be changed to Bank Disservice.
A customer just down from Goroka for a day spent 55 minutes in a queue
at the Boroko branch of the bank only to be told by the teller that
"I am on my lunch break now - go join the back of the other queue".
On the same day the same person went to the ANZ Bank in Waigani where
they have a numbering system for customers and also seating although
the service is usually very fast so the seats aren't always used. How
different the service is between the two banks. One is opening up more
ATM's to cover up the inefficiencies or the pig headedness of the staff
and the other has a minimal number of ATM's.
Another story from a reader says the BSP advertises their home loan
rate every Monday in the Post Courier. This is a great idea except the
bank is charging this reader an extra 1 percent on top of the advertised
rate. Some of the horror stories that have been verified about the disservice
by the BSP makes me wonder if selling off the, what was thought to be,
inefficient PNG Banking Corporation was such a good idea. It would appear
that the BSP now offers an inferior service for grass roots customers
Finally, after many years of neglect, it appears that the production
of the Parliamentary Hansard may be getting some attention by the present
Speaker of Parliament. The Speaker has said that the area responsible
for recording all the Parliament sessions has recently benefited from
the purchase of computer gear and recording equipment. He has also said
that it may take a long time to get the records straight. The final
reports of the Hansard are only up to April 2000 while records from
May 2000 up to two weeks ago are only in a draft format.
Bulolo is a very significant town in the history of aviation in PNG.
In fact in the early 1930s, PNG led the aviation world for the amount
of cargo carried. Over and over again world airfreight records were
set and broken by the small fleet of heavy Junkers aircraft flown mostly
between Lae and the Morobe goldfield town of Bulolo. Almost the entire
township of Bulolo comprising workshops, sawmills, heavy engineering
equipment, power stations and numerous other items required by a mining
town were all flown into Bulolo from Lae in the 1930's. The plane that
helped to set these records, the German-built Junkers G31, was possibly
the only plane capable of carry some of the equipment at the time in
fact some of the equipment such as big gold dredges were made in sections
that took advantage of the huge cargo carrying capability of the tri-motor
There were four Junkers G31's operating in the goldfields -- VH-UOU,
VH-UOV, VH-UOW and VH-URQ -- http://www.michie.net/trevor/vh-uou(1).html
How many towns are decaying in PNG? Better still don't worry about
towns but what about the whole of Manus Province? A friend who visited
recently said that they had to survive on sago for the week they were
there because there was no rice on the shelves of the shops in the provincial
capital. Without even a supply of staple food it was too much to expect
luxury food items to be available. To make matters worse the Westpac
bank has closed and Ela Motors have shut up shop and left the province.
It could be argued that it is time to let the provincial name go and
join up with a more prosperous province (if there is one close by)?
I thought the Australian Asylum Centre on the island was going to help
the province but now it has closed and gone is it worth while for any
of the other suppliers of goods and services to be around?
The recent troubles at the University of PNG have highlighted concerns
by students about the grading system in use by the university. The Higher
Education Minister, Brian Pulayasi, has formed a group to look into
the concerns of the students.
Air Niugini has been allowed to continue flying its Fokker F28 and
F100 aircraft in the country except for the F100 that has suffered a
small spill of mercury. No matter how small a spill of mercury can have
disastrous effects on the metal used to build aircraft. Industry sources
have indicated that the paintwork should have contained the spill but
Air Niugini, not wanting to compromise safety, is getting overseas industry
experts to inspect the plane.
South Pacific Games
Athletes from PNG are now in Palau competing at the Sixth Mini South
Pacific Games. The games are being held from the 25th of July to the
5th of August. The fundraising activities, to send the athletes to the
games, fell short by about K165,000
PNG has been urged to develop the local textile and garment industry.
It is anticipated that the country could save as much as K350 million
annually. According to the PNG Garment and Textile Training Industry
project manager currently over K350 million is spent on importing clothes
into the country. Half of these imports are second-hand clothes and
are mostly sold at markets.
East New Britain Clothing
Following the passing of legislation by the East New Britain (ENB)
Provincial Assembly for the establishment of a Textile Training Centre
the women in ENB will now be able to set up small textile and garment
industries in the province. The aim of the centre will be to provide
advice, training and technical assistance to help promote the development
of an industry in the country.
From time to time the Kokoda Trail pops up in one-way or another. It
seems to be the one thing along with the Highland Shows, Madang and
Rabaul that are mentioned frequently by tourists wishing to come to
PNG. The trail or track is well known for its part in the fight between
the Allies and the Japanese in the Second World War but nowadays it
has become "the" walk to do in PNG. There are plenty of other
walks that are possibly better but perhaps the Kokoda walk is the benchmark
for physical endurance. Many operators offer the Kokoda Trail complete
with carriers to help with the necessary food and camping equipment.
Here are some of the operators starting with my favourite, -- http://www.kokodatrail.com.au
-- run by Gail Thomas at PNG Business and Tourism Directory -- http://www.pngbd.com
-- of course it is up to the reader to make their own choice when choosing
any tour company.
Not sure what to expect and want to sample a bit of The Trail? I know
that Nikki and Pam at PNG Trekking and Adventures offer a short weekend
familiarisation of a tiny segment of the trail to people. This will
let you or maybe your body know what to expect without having the pain
of trying to complete a full walk across the trail. Not sure if the
others offer this or not but I recommend that you ask.
All of the above operators, although specialising in the Kokoda Trail,
offer other tours around the country so it is recommended to look at
the relevant websites and ask questions.
I mentioned above the Highland Shows, Madang and Rabaul as places that
are mentioned by tourists but there is also a walk up Mt Wilhelm, at
just a little over 4500 metres it is higher than Mt Kosciusko the highest
mountain in Australia. Of course places like the fjords of Tufi, the
Black Cat Trail, the walk from Alotau to Dogura -- http://www.michie.net/pnginfo/wamira.html
-- all spring to mind.
Feasibly studies by the Department of Agriculture and Livestock have
indicated that as well as other areas of PNG wheat could be grown at
Pilikambi in the Lagaip headwaters of the Laiagam district of Enga Province.
Priority will be given to distributing seed to schools in the area as
part of their education program on farming crops. After the seed has
been distributed and proved to be able to be grown by the schools local
farmers will be considered for seed distribution.
Prisons in PNG
- Bomana in Port Moresby, NCD also for Central
- Buimo in Lae, Morobe Province
- Baisu in Mt. Hagen, Western Highlands Province
- Keravat in Rabaul, East New Britain Province
- Bui-Iebi (Yebi) in Mendi, Southern Highlands Province
- Bihute in Goroka, Eastern Highlands Province
- Bundaira in Kainantu, Eastern highlands Province
- Boram in Wewak, East Sepik Province
- Vanimo in Vanimo, West Sandaun province
- Daru in Daru, Western Province
- Ningerum in Kiunga, Western Province
- Beon in Madang, Madang Province
- Barawagi in Kundiawa, Simbu province
- Giligili in Alotau Milne Bay Province
- Hawa in Tari, Southern Highlands Province
- Wabag in Wabag, Enga Province
- Lakiemata in Kimbe, West New Britain Province
- Kavieng in Kavieng, New Ireland Province
- Manus in Lorengau, Manus Province
Tumbuna Taim Show
PNG has a new cultural spectacle - The Tumbuna Taim Show. Sponsored
by confectionary manufacturer Nestle PNG Limited under its Nescafe brand,
it will be staged at the Sir Hubert Murray Stadium in Port Moresby on
the 30th of July. An initiative of the National Cultural Commission
of PNG, it will be staged annually and will feature PNG's rich cultural
diversity in song and dance and feasting rituals. For more info email
-- or telephone: +675 323 5111. Don't forget to mention the PNG Gossip
Newsletter when contacting anyone mentioned in this newsletter.
Mount Hagen Show, Western Highlands Province -- around the 20th of
Squash - The K50,000 Steel Industries PNG Squash International has
been set to be held between the 16th and 21st of August in Port Moresby.
PNG 30th Independence Day Celebrations -- 16th September 2005.
Hiri Moale Festival -- 15th to 18th of September 2005.
Goroka Show -- Independence Weekend (17th - 19th September)
Tufi Cultural Show -- 17th - 19th September
Morobe Show, Lae -- 15th and 16th of October 2005
The Milne Bay Canoe and Kundu (drum) festival is to be held 4th - 6th
2006 - April 8th to the 16th -- National Game Fishing Titles
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