29 Sep 2004

Owners say new oil refinery a boon for the PNG economy

3:39 pm on 29 September 2004

The Texas-based firm operating Papua New Guinea's first oil refinery says it's boosting the economy and bringing more employment.

The chief executive of Interoil, Phil Mulacek, says local workers have been involved in setting up the site near the harbour in Port Moresby.

Mr Mulacek says up to 1-thousand 6-hundred people are employed offsite and 9-hundred on the site.

Mr Mulacek was asked what share of the workforce comes from PNG.

"Over eighty per cent in areas. There are certain ex-pats that are brought in, that are refinery operators, and upper management, but a vast amount are local."

Phil Mulacek says the turnover will provide substantial economic benefits to the country.

Exports from the refinery began this month and the company opened its first petrol station this week, after it bought BP Papua New Guinea.