Business

July 2014

Japan’s Abe spurs PNG interest

Davendra Sharma

TWO new Japanese-initiated petrochemical plants – one each in Papua New Guinea and West Papua, Indonesia are set to pick up green lights as feasibility studies open new hopes for creating local petrol sufficiency in parts of the region. To bolster Japanese interest in PNG, a reciprocal visit to Port ...

Marshall Islands move into commercial fish farming

Giff Johnson

The history of the Marshall Islands is littered with so many failed attempts to turn aquaculture and fish farming ideas into commercially viable businesses that it is a wonder Rongelap Mayor James Matayoshi even considered starting a fish farming operation in Majuro. But for once, all of the ingredients are ...

June 2014

Big construction project in Chuuk in limbo

Giff Johnson

After huge cost overruns, major delays and problems with faulty designs, the largest construction project ever undertaken in the Federated States of Micronesia is now at a standstill with multiple lawsuits looming.

Selling the Pacific to the world under one roof

Samisoni Pareti

Pacific’s national tourism offices have given thumbs up to efforts by the South Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO) to organise a regional tourism buyer and seller market.

LNG project absorbs skilled workers in PNG

Davendra Sharma

Operators of Papua New Guinea’s new liquefied natural gas export company have trained nearly 10,000 locals for production and delivery roles as the region’s biggest commercial project rolls off the ground next month.

May 2014

Data holds the key, says SPTO

Robert Matau

Regional tourism body, the South Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO) wants tourism data to be accurate and made available on a timely basis.

Chinese yuan, PNG kina open new market of riches

Davendra Sharma

A new wave of splurge spending by Chinese in the Pacific and Papua New Guinea’s incredible leap into high economic drive with a mid-year opening of LNG project will open roads to a phenomenal growth in Asia/Pacific in the very near future, the region’s leading bank, Australia & New Zealand ...

Banking woes continue to plague Nauru

Robert Matau

Uncertainties in initial assessments on Nauru Island were behind the Bendigo and Adelaide Bank’s decision not to establish full commercial operations or a community bank as planned. The bank had proposed to open a community bank on the island last year and sent a team to carry out due diligence ...

‘Cowboy’ operators worry registered firms

Alfred Sasako

In a world that’s becoming increasingly environmentally-friendly, logging is a dirty word. So much so that even commercial banks, conscious of the growing influence of the green economy, are refusing to have anything to do with loggers. That awareness has driven the logging industry in Solomon Islands to lift its ...

April 2014

Total Oil joins Oil Search for PNG’s LNG # 2

Davendra Sharma

With less than three months of wait left before Papua New Guinea rolls out exports from its US419.12 billion (Kina 52.16 billion) LNG project, Peter O’Neill’s Government has given thumps up for a second such plant involving Australian and French interests. Australia’s Oil Search and Paris-based Total Oil sealed a ...

BSP posts US$147m profit

Sam Vulum

Bank South Pacific, the largest bank in Papua New Guinea and the South Pacific has announced more than K400 million (USD147m) in net profit for the 2013 financial year. The BSP Group achieved a consolidated operating profit before tax of US$223.5m for the 2013 financial year an 11.3% increase on ...

Closing down loopholes, G20 targets tax havens

Davendra Sharma

Pacific island countries with legitimate tax-haven status like the Cook Islands and Vanuatu risk being isolated and dealt with under new radical plan to force governments and their agencies to reveal details of non-residents hiding stashes of cash in their countries.

PNA decisions painful but necessary

Giff Johnson
Mon 17 Mar 2014 -

We should be so lucky to have the Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA) having such problems like this—what to do with US$93 million and how to distribute this pot of money resulting from last year’s successful conclusion of negotiations with the U.S. government and its tuna industry? This is ...

February 2014

Yazaki Samoa cuts working hours

Merita Huch

The weekly 40 working hours for some 800 Yazaki Samoa factory workers will be reduced starting February to 32 hours.

PM confident Samoa will do well after LDC

Merita Huch

New Year’s Day 2014 will be remembered as the day that Samoa left the group of countries considered the least developed in the world.

Low copra prices prompts Karkar’s bio-fuel diesel

Sam Vulum

The plummeting world copra prices has forced copra plantation owners to look for other avenues to raise the value of their copra.

Good news for the Pacific in terms of EU funding

Robert Matau

The Pacific should consider itself lucky. It is not amongst the 19 countries that will suffer aid cuts under the European Union’s new international aid initiatives.

Brazil coffee oversupply to hit PNG/Vanuatu

Davendra Sharma

As global supply exceeds demand for coffee for a fourth straight year, small world producers like Papua New Guinea and to lesser extent Vanuatu will feel the pinch of exports dwindling in 2014 in the US$70 billion world market.

Cobalt in Cooks awaits exploitation

Dionisia Tabureguci

This year could be a defining year for seabed minerals in Cook Islands.

January 2014

Courts can’t take Cooks trusts to court

Davendra Sharma

New reports emerged in Washington last month with claims that Cook Islands is hiding millions possibly billions in monies secretly moved there by foreign trusts. A prominent United States financial investment lawyer was quoted by the respected New York Times suggesting that real estate developers, healthcare providers, accountants, architects to ...

Holden pulls plug, hits Samoa exports

Davendra Sharma

As Australia’s car manufacturing took a new twist last month with the announcement of an imminent closure of Holden brand name from 2017, shivers were being sent through to Samoa where a parts manufacturer was weighing up its chances of survival.

Fiji Airways to expand partnership with Qantas

Fiji Airways is looking to expand its partnership with Qantas to include codeshared flights but sees no value in joining any of the airline alliance families such as Oneworld, Star Alliance and SkyTeam. Qantas holds a 46 percent stake in the Fijian carrier and the two airlines currently operate a ...

PACPs firm on ‘variable geometry’ stand

Dionisia Tabureguci

The Pacific trade bloc of the African CARIBbean and Pacific (PACP) is expected to maintain its “variable geometry” stand when it returns to negotiations with the European Union for an Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) this year.

December 2013

$500m cost to Fiji of domestic violence

Estimating the costs of gender-based violence is vital as it brings to light the hidden costs to society and the resources needed to end violence.

Banks go branchless to reach the unbanked

Michael Hutak

It might be the woman market stall holder in a city like Port Moresby, who needs security for her daily takings, or the rural Solomon Islands school teacher who must spend up to half his wage in boat fuel travelling to a bank to collect his pay. Both could use ...