Landowner payments ready for disbursement

The LNG project operator has already paid K108 million as landowner payment to the State under the PNG LNG Project Agreement.

“To date approximately K108 million in landowner royalty payments has been deposited by PNG LNG, into a trust account set up by the Government of PNG with Bank of Papua New Guinea,” BPNG Governor Loi Bakani said in a statement.

 “As soon as the Government has completed the process of landowner identification currently underway, all necessary arrangements will be made to disburse the funds to the rightful landowners.”

Loop PNG cannot confirm with the bank the total number of LNG trains sold so far and or the value of the sales when the story was published.

But on Wednesday, Grand Chief Sir Michael Somare said “55 ships (LNG gas load) worth an estimated US$40million has been sold and the government must pay the landowners what is rightfully theirs.”    

Bakani said “the money has been safeguarded for landowners with multiple government signatories required before it can be released.” 

“Also the first development levy payment of K73.8 million on March 27 this year,” he added.  

“In addition to royalties and development levies the State is directly benefiting from the PNG LNG project through equity dividends paid by the operator to the National Petroleum Company of PNG and direct and indirect taxes.”

"This is a project of national importance to Papua New Guinea and we look forward to working with ExxonMobil PNG in support of future expansion opportunities, including the P’nyang development.”

Charles Yapumi