Ramandu Bay Estate Limited, the business arm of the Rabaul District Development Authority, has a lot of economic potential however it has encountered a lot of issues, including administrative and financial issues, in its eight years of operation.
The cocoa and coconut plantation was purchased by the District in 2015 at a cost of K860 000 for 101 hectares from the Woolcot family.
Caretaker plantation Manager Priscilla Karealonan said proper roads and logistics are just two of the main challenges they are facing.
“Our feeder roads within the plantation need proper upgrading and maintenance. We have gathered coconuts in the different blocks, and it has been there for weeks.”
“Most of the roads are affected by continuous rain and are not accessible.”
She added, “The plantation needs more manpower to focus on the different cash crop grown such as coconut, cocoa and balsa including their machineries.”
“At the moment we are short staffed, and we do not have the capacity of maintaining the whole plantation so do rotations of daily tasks.”
The Rabaul Economic Sector Head Eliaser Mutumut undertook a scoping of the plantation’s feeder roads recently.
Additionally, the District Administrator Benedict Mode has also taken note of the issues faced by the plantation through a recent report presented to the Rabaul District Development Authority Board.
He said that plans are in place to rehabilitate the estate and this will include a new Management and Board.