The PNG Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (PNGEITI), was approved by the Government of PNG (GoPNG) through NEC Decision No. 90/2013, promoting revenue transparency and accountability in the country’s mining and petroleum sectors. GoPNG fully supports the EITI global standard and, in collaboration with CSOs and industry established the PNGEITI multi-stakeholder group on the 1st of November 2013.
Discussion on EITI started in 2006 as a result of PNG Gas Project. The Government was asked to implement EITI as part of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) condition to finance the project (now defunct).A scoping study was therefore conducted to determine whether PNG should participate in the EITI.
The scoping study identified that PNG has already implemented some of the initiatives established under the EITI at the National Government level, although PNG was not an EITI member country. However, the study also highlighted that implementing EITI will greatly increase the transparency and accountability of extractive industries revenues to the National Government and redistribution to the provincial and local level governments.
On April 2011, based on the findings of the scoping study, the NEC in 2011, endorsed (NEC Decision No. 47/2011) the establishment of a State Working Group (SWG) to assess the advantages and disadvantages of signing up to EITI. In particular, the SWG was tasked with further investigating the possibility of implementing the EITI in PNG and report back to NEC with a detailed work plan for endorsement
As a result, the SWG engaged with major extractive industry participants and civil society organizations in PNG to gauge their views and support. A workshop was therefore organized and the stakeholders (government agencies, companies and civil society Page 2 of 3 organizations) expressed their views and support for PNG to participate in the EITI. A team from Timor Leste also shared their experience of implementing EITI during the workshop.
The key recommendation by the SWG to Cabinet after the consultations with relevant stakeholders on the possibility of EITI implementation in PNG, that it endorse the implementation of EITI and approved the establishment of a PNG Multi Stakeholder Group (PNGMSG) to develop a detailed work plan for EITI implementation in PNG that incorporated views of every interested stakeholders in the extractive industry.
An informal MSG was, therefore formed which comprises of the SWG, major industry players such as Esso Highlands Limited, Oil Search Limited, Ok Tedi Mining Limited, Newcrest Mining Limited and Barrick/PJV and civil society organizations including Transparency International PNG, PNG Institute of National Affairs and Consultative Implementing and Monitoring Council.
On March 2013, the NEC (NEC Decision No. 90/2013) approved that PNG will sign up to the EITI and endorsed the Treasurer as Minister responsible to lead the implementation of EITI in PNG and endorsed Treasurer to make the public announcement on behalf of the Government that PNG will sign up to the EITI.
The Treasurer made the announcement which was published in the print media and aired on television. The announcement was further reiterated by the Treasurer at the 6th EITI Global Conference held in Sydney on May 2013. The Treasurer proudly announced PNG Government’s commitment to implement EITI in front of 1400 participants including international media and committed that PNG should submit its application for candidacy by end of 2013. The NEC Decision No. 90/2013 basically approved the five sign up steps to be fulfilled before applying for candidacy.