13 Sep 2010

Former PNG PM sounds alarm over potential for mismanagement of LNG money

10:15 am on 13 September 2010

A former Papua New Guinea Prime Minister says he is frightened by the potential for financial mismanagement of the Liquified Natural Gas project by the government.

Sir Julius Chan claims the government has rushed through legal provisions for the large LNG Project without most MPs having an understanding of the ramifications of the project .

The project is expected to double the country's GDP to about 18 billion US dollars but Sir Julius says there's no indication that most ordinary people in PNG will benefit.

He says the government's lack of accountability in public finances doesn't bode well for the management of LNG earnings.

"There's been talk that we ought to put so much of the money outside (into a sovereign fund) which is a good idea if there are the right people to monitor it but I'm very uncertain about almost everything (to do with this) and even the LNG project can come to a standstill."