Prime Minister O’Neill Clarifies Sovereign Bond

By Delly Waigeno – EM TV News, Port Moresby

Prime Minister, Peter O’Neill, told parliament today that landowner shares in the LNG project have not been mortgaged to pay outstanding loans.

He was responding to questions by Opposition leader, Don Polye, during question time.

He said the only bond being pursued by the Central Bank is to raise foreign currency of one billion US dollars to strengthen the kina.

Opposition leader, Don Polye, issued a series of questions to the Prime Minister regarding Sovereign Bond.

Mr Polye asked the Prime Minister if the government was mortgaging earnings from the LNG Project belonging to landowners.

The Prime Minister said it was misleading for the Opposition Leader to say that the government was borrowing money for the landowners, issuing Sovereign Bond to pay for the 4.2%.

Mr O’Neill further explained that landowners’ benefits from the exports are being affected by the low commodity prices driven by global supply and demand; and that the 2016 National Budget and the 2015 Supplementary Budgets, are being adjusted accordingly.

The Prime Minister went on to announce that landowners’ royalty and Development Levi are being parked at the Central Bank.

He said they are waiting for resolutions to current landowner disputes regarding resource ownership.

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