The Minister for International Trade and Investments wants to see more investments in the energy sector in order to see a reduction in the cost of electricity, so to boost production and improving the general economic status of the country.
Minister Richard Maru, when giving his keynote speech at the last day of the 2023 Petroleum and Energy in Port Moresby today, said the cost of electricity in doing business is another factor apart from the law-and-order situation that is affecting the business sector, with the high costs of things being passed on to the public.
The high cost of energy is also chasing away potential investors from entering the economy.
Maru said it would be difficult for an investor to start operations in the country, whether in the agriculture or mining and petroleum sectors, because there might not be any good returns from their investment capital.
That is why Minister Maru wants to see more investors tapping into the energy sector and developing it.
Taking the example from the Chinese private investment in the Edevu Hydro Dam in the Central province, Maru said there is enough resources in the country that can make way for even clean and green energy production, which would lead to lost cost energy.
He said other nations have managed to reduce the cost of energy and Papua New Guinea (PNG) should be learning from them.
“We need to get the cost of electricity down to compatible rates like Thailand, China and Indonesia, whom we are going to complete with,” said the minister.
“I’m looking for solutions to how the electricity industry can come up with outcomes like cheap energy, which is compatible clean energy.”
Maru wants to see a plan formulated through the Conference and other similar meetings in the future on ways forward to having clean and cheap energy.
“So, for us as government, we need to seriously look at how we incentivize investors, make it attractive for others to invest in this sector (energy).”
“I will be interested in hearing some of the outcomes on your proposals on what we should do to attract investors,” Mr. Maru said.