PNG PM’s speech last week about InterOil and investing in energy on PNG

Speech at a Business Luncheon at the Kramer Ausenco function. An absolutely compelling read..

Read the speech here (pdf)

Some relevant parts (but do read the whole speech)

We can also make adjustments under the applicable tax regimes to reward provinces that host these multi-billion dollar mining and petroleum projects with some percentage of tax benefits derived from these projects.

The most-important agenda of my government, with respect to the mining and petroleum industries, is to create an enabling environment within which projects can be developed peacefully and benefits and multiplier business opportunities derived thereof
are shared fairly among all stakeholders.

There is no need at the present time to destabilise mining and petroleum industry developers and investors with a law designed to compromise or reduce their present respective equity position.

The applicable laws have not changed. Changes may and will occur in the future but they will have to be driven by a win-win formula for all stakeholders in a predicable manner.

These changes – when they are desired and when they do occur – will take place with and after comprehensive dialogue and discussion with you and with all other affected parties including landowners in Papua New Guinea.

Let me also reassure you that my government is about being inclusive right across the board on all matters of national affairs. And that includes all aspects of the foreign investment and natural resource extraction industries sectors in PNG.

My government is not about creating sovereign risks for my nation’s foreign investment and development potential. My government is not about making life difficult for foreign investors, especially those that have invested millions of dollars in speculative exploration and later to develop and underpin emerging world class mining and hydrocarbon industries in PNG.

My government respects the principle of finders keep and finders share. That is the spirit within which we will, and we shall all operate under my watch. I have cautioned, and will caution again, my ministers and State-owned corporations, involved in the mining and hydrocarbon industry, to desist promptly from giving misleading signals to the foreign investment sector.

It is not my government’s position to create insecurity, political risk or threaten foreign investment with expropriation. Some of these negative signals have been made since my government took office.

I will vigorously investigate this deception targeted at the progress of the two multibillion dollar LNG projects and take corrective action in the coming days. Let me reiterate in the strongest terms that I lead an inclusive and consultative government that will not fall back on the bad habits of governments that have been in power previously in PNG.