Tag Archives: Tax

Parliament Debates Missing Taxes

BY JEFFREY ELAPA

The country has been missing a lot in taxes and benefits from the logging operations in the country, the National Parliament was told this week.

Members of Parliament and governors whose provinces have existing logging activities raised concerns that the people have been missing a lot from the logging operations as companies continue to evade logging taxes and other rightful benefits to the people and government.

Oro Governor Garry Juffa said many of the companies are operating criminally and often avoid paying taxes.

He said as former boss of Customs he has evidence of some of those companies who continue to evade paying taxes while many others continue to abuse the landowners using state agencies like police.

“When we entered into the look north policy, the country invited alot of people some of whom are genuine logging companies while others are not genuine but operated by criminals. Some of them manipulate the public service and political landscape,” Mr Juffa said.

“As an independent nation, we must not allow criminal companies to enter and destroy our people and our resources.”

Mr Juffa said the practice of paying royalties is something of the past, it is a colonial and outdated rule and practice and that must stop and look at make good laws through the proposed review to monitor the conduct and practice of the logging companies.

He said the provincial forest board has colluded with officers from the National Forest Authority to issue licenses to many of these rogue companies.

He said another development is good there must be a balance so that there is maximum benefit for our people.
Gulf Governor Chris Haiveta said it is high time all the agreements and law needs to be reviewed.

He said the provincial governments and landowners from timber concessional areas to be included as impacted provinces have bad experiences from logging operations in the country.

He said half of Gulf Province is engaged in logging but the benefits are minimal while many of the companies are operating illegal although their logging permits have expired some 6 years ago.

Among other issues, Mr Haiveta said in his province the log development levies have either been used to fund election while the landowners have missed out on such benefits.
He proposed other option in the review, an one of them is to consider state market option, domestic market obligation as in mining companies to be introduced.

Mr Haiveta said other option to be considered in the review must be include mandatory equity participation and review vehicle registration exemption given to the logging companies by the Department of Transport.

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Improvements to Taxes and Infrastructure Crucial for Papua New Guinea SMEs, says Millennium Water MD

Source: Business Advantage PNG

Achilles Peni’s water treatment business was one out of 10 companies selected to participate in Papua New Guinea’s SME Advancement Program, led by the World Bank, the Government and Bank South Pacific PNG.

The company sells purified water from Port Moresby. It has long-term plans to build the first natural mineral and spring water facility in Papua New Guinea.

Peni, who is a water and wastewater treatment technologist with over 26 years experience, says the company will then be positioned to bottle water directly from the base of the Owen Stanley Range near the Kokoda Track.

Market

There is a large potential market. According to a study by Water Aid, Papua New Guinea has the world’s worst access to clean water. It found that 4.8 million people in the country do not have clean water.

The Water Aid study says access to clean drinking water and sanitation is an issue for over half of Papua New Guinea’s population. The annual rainy season is also often followed by drought, which adds to the difficulties.

‘One way to support local producers is to increase taxes on imported goods.’

Lae

Peni says the company’s Lae branch initially operated ‘very well’ but the economic downturn meant that it had to be closed down. He says he has been forced to adopt a defensive strategy.

‘Millennium Water is surviving, but the company isn’t thriving.’

Peni lists his greatest challenges as high freight costs, and the lax application of importation taxes. He says many local businesses struggle to get their products transported to the buyers in a reasonable timeframe.

One way to support local producers, he says, is to increase taxes on imported goods.

‘The Government must promote local products first by imposing an import duty tax. These actions will help create a level playing field.’

Peni says reducing freight costs and developing local infrastructure, especially rail and road, will also greatly aid PNG SMEs.

Contracts

Millennium Water has continued to be successful during the economic downturn by securing contracts with large companies, including PNG Power Limited and ExxonMobil.

‘Keeping the dispensers clean helps to maintain the light, sweet taste of the water.’

In addition, the company offers cleaning of its water dispensers free of charge, to attract and maintain its client base.

Keeping the dispensers clean helps to maintain the light, sweet taste of the water, which makes the product competitive, Peni explains.