26 Jul 2006

PNG government reconsiders sale of state entities

10:18 am on 26 July 2006

The sale of all state-owned entities in Papua New Guinea may be deferred as the government drafts a new strategy aimed at growing the economy.

The newly-appointed minister for State Enterprises, Arthur Somare, says that many of the state-owned companies recorded profits last year.

Some of the state-owned entities earmarked to be sold under the privatisation plan included Telikom PNG, PNG Harbours, Motor Vehicles Insurance Limited and Air Niugini.

The PNG Banking Corporation was merged with Bank South Pacific making it the only organisation to be sold under the privatisation scheme while the sale of Telikom was ditched at the last minute after Mr Somare strongly opposed it.

The Post Courier reports that Mr Somare says the economic growth of PNG is at 3% per annum and the government plans to increase this and improve the delivery of services of state-owned entities to their customers.