PNG Ports seeks talks on controversial tender

PNG Ports says it welcomes constructive talks with all major stakeholders about their participation and opportunity with the new terminal operator.

This comes after Port Moresby port workers went on strike calling for the government to re look at the tender process of awarding stevedoring businesses in two of the nation’s busiest ports.

PNG Ports maintains that all avenues of negotiations with Steamships and its landowner partners to accommodate their interests have not been exhausted.

Consultations and negotiations will start late this month with a view towards structuring “a mutually beneficial outcome’’.

PNGPCL advertised in both local and international media in mid-August this year calling for expressions of interest (EOIs) in the first phase of the concession process to appoint a reputable sea port container terminal operator for its new terminal facilities in Lae and Port Moresby.”

They say the intention is for a partnership with the successful terminal operator be established within a public private partnership framework.

“All processes undertaken are consistent with National Government policies which include allowance for national content consideration as a priority,” says PNG Ports.

They also say they recognize that key to this process is the requirement for negotiations with landowners to establish their preference for participation within the proposed new container terminal operating concessions.

Local ownership component is a key policy for the National Government and much work remains to ensure this process favours an inclusive arrangement for impacted communities.

It is anticipated that the successful terminal operator will begin  operations in mid-2017.

PNG Ports hopes that commonsense will dictate parties to reconvene and allow port operations to resume.

Joy Kisselpar