The Minister for Public Enterprises, Sir Mekere Morauta said there would be no redundancies at PNG Power Limited as a result of any PPP arrangement to fix Port Moresby’s power problems.
He said no one will lose their jobs as a result of the current exercise and that no PPL employee will lose any of their existing entitlements or suffer any loss of their employment terms and conditions, including wages, superannuation, staff loans, savings and loans and salary sacrifice arrangements, accrued leave and long-service leave.
He said those are guarantees that are part and parcel of the current negotiations.
He added that the Government values PPL staff, as does PPL and IPBC. Retaining existing staff is a critical part of the plan that the Government has for fixing Port Moresby’s power supply problem.
Sir Mekere said he had offered, through PPL, to meet union representatives to reassure them of the Government’s good intentions. He said he would also be happy to explain the Government’s plan in more detail.
In particular, he said, he wanted to tell workers that NO power generation asset was being sold to anyone.
“The assets will be transferred from PPL to a wholly owned subsidiary to be called Port Moresby Power Limited. So PPL, through Port Moresby Power Limited, will continue to own the assets,” he said.
“Similar arrangements will be used to expand the Ramu scheme with a big new power station at Yonki.
He said if current negotiations with LR Group are successful, LR Group and PNG Power will have a 50-50 management contract to refurbish, maintain and manage the assets owned by Port Moresby Power Limited. LR will have a half share in managing the assets, not any form of ownership at all.”
Sir Mekere said PNG Power employees who may be transferred to Port Moresby Power Limited will do the same work they have always done, on the same employment terms and conditions.
Meanwhile the only difference will be that they will have new skills, new equipment and new financial resources to do their work. And the people of Port Moresby will have a reliable power supply once more and endless electricity price rises will be a thing of the past for consumers.