Prime Minister Applauds Domestic Gas

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By Delly Bagu – EM TV, Port Moresby

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill reiterated the importance of domestic gas supply ahead of international events, beginning with the 2015 Pacific Games.

He was responding to questions from Western Province MP, Ati Wobiro in parliament yesterday about the impacts of the recent MOA between the state and ExxonMobil.

In the agreement, the PNGLNG Project will deliver up to 25 megawatts of power to Port Moresby. Mr O’Neill said this is expected to decrease the cost of power by up to 50 per cent.

Prime Minister O’Neill explained that the domestic market obligation was not included under the Umbrella Benefits Sharing Agreemen’s.

As a result, the project itself is exporting all the gas that’s been produced by the PNG LNG Project to customers overseas.

The Prime Minister said, “as a result, PNG does not have any gas that was made available for domestic consumption.”

He said with the capacity strains of PNG Power Limited, the government wanted to make sure that stable and consistent power supply was provided, given the coming Pacific Games and other major international events.

“Mr Speaker, it is a much welcome relief to the residents of Port Moresby; the last thing we want to do is to embarrass ourselves when we host major events like the Pacific Games and we don’t have power supply and blackouts happen in the middle of track and field events as such,” Mr O’Neill said.

Mr O’Neill added that there is also a good chance that a 3rd train will be developed by the PNG LNG Project. This means developing domestic industries is another step closer to being realised for PNG.

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