1 Nov 2010

PNG government urged to have genuine talks with landowners

6:06 am on 1 November 2010

The Papua New Guinea Institute of National Affairs says the PNG government has to develop a more genuine dialogue with landowners to ensure that major resource projects are not undermined.

The government has held an emergency cabinet meeting after the investors in the huge Liquid Natural Gas project said they were considering their options because of continual disruptions to their construction programme.

Most recently, the project's various construction sites have been brought to a standstill by as equipment has been set on fire, along with stopworks and protests by groups claiming they've been unfairly dealt with.

More police have been sent to the construction sites but the Institute's executive director, Paul Barker, says the government, the developers and the local communities need to enter into serious discussions:

"There's been a lot of concern that this government has been listening to certain factions and inadequately responding to some of the other community concerns. So it's that sort of sense of unfairness amongst communities which often poses the greatest risk."