ICCC Launches Staff Housing Policy

The Independent Consumer and Competition Commission (ICCC) has launched its housing policy and signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Bank South Pacific Financial Group (BSP) that will benefit its staff and contribute to staff retention.

The ICCC Housing Policy is an inclusive financial assistance package for all ICCC staff to participate in the First Home Buyer Scheme (FBHS), the Home Renovation/Extension Scheme, and the Land Purchase Scheme for purposes of building a house.

Present to witness the ceremony were representatives from the Internal Revenue Commission (IRC) BSP, Financial, the Department of Treasury and staff of the ICCC.

ICCC Commissioner and Chief Executive Officer, Paulus Ain said over 90% of staff at the ICCC do not own a house and are either renting in medium to low-cost properties, or reside with relatives, or live at settlements and nearby villages.

 “Under the FHBS, the ICCC will provide a specific subsidy amount to staff according their position grade and years of service. The subsidy amount provided under the FHBS will assist staff to participate under the Citizen First Home Ownership Scheme administered by BSP”.

“In turn, staff eligible to participate will repay through their commitment to work with the ICCC for additional number of years after receiving the subsidy.”

Ain added that ICCC would also provide financial assistance by way of advances to staff who wish to renovate or extend their existing homes and to purchase land.

The MoU provides a formal understanding for the First Home Buyer Scheme.

Ain explained that the housing policy is an incentive for the ICCC to attract and retain highly qualified staff in the PNG labor market during this competitive time.

“The ICCC believes that this policy will certainly boost its staff performance in terms of implementing government policies effectively, insofar the PNG’s competition law and policies are concerned.”

“Through the housing policy, the intent of the ICCC Board is to provide an attractive workplace for competent and best performing public servants in the hope that our staff will continue to deliver outcomes designed to ensure markets are competitive, conduct of businesses are pro-competition, industries are regulated fairly and consumer interests are safeguarded.”

BSP Financial Group Deputy General Manager Sales & Customer Service, Retail Banking, Peter Komon said the first home buyer scheme for BSP is part of an ecosystem of Papua New Guineans helping Papua New Guineans.

“BSP is pretty much Papua New Guinean owned. We’re the largest bank in the Pacific Region. At the end of the day, we are working for our future, if you apply for a loan and you’re looking for equity and whatnot, you go to your superannuation provider. And those institutions rely on the bank to generate their income for them.”

Komon said a house is a form of generational wealth that officers can pass down to their children.

“Not everyone here is going to start a business, invest in real estate and all that, but for the average Papua New Guinean, owning a home is your generational wealth. You are creating that and you will pass on to your children and that is very good.”

Deputy Commissioner General for the Internal Revenue Commission Policy and Advise, Cecilia Magun said the IRC is proud to assist officers, make their dreams come true.

“I would encourage you all to continue to work within the confines of the law so you assist us, we assist you so we can generate the needed revenue for the state so the state will continue to assist all of us to find a decent home to look after our families.

Department of Treasury First Secretary Professor Misty Baloiloi conveyed the congratulations of Minister for Finance and Treasurer, Ian Ling-Stuckey to the ICCC and appreciation for the working efficiently in their role.

Melissa Wokasup