THE K108 million royalties for landowners from the PNG LNG project in Bank of Papua New Guinea will not be touched until the clan vetting process is completed, Mineral Resources Development Company (MRDC) says.Managing director Augustine Mano, said MRDC was waiting for the process to complete before the funds could be distributed.
MRDC manages the equity funds for landowner companies from the major resource development areas of PNG.
Mano said: “The monies parked there are royalties and are currently waiting clan vetting.
“We are currently waiting for clan vetting and land owner identification and only after that then these monies will be distributed.
“The fact is no one is allowed to touch or get any of that money until clan vetting is done.”
Bank of Papua New Guinea governor Loi Bakani had reassured the people that all revenue streams from the PNG LNG Project were paid by the operator on time and as required under the PNG LNG Project Agreement.
Bakani further confirmed that landowner royalties were being paid by the operator into a trust account with the Bank of PNG.
“I would like to allay landowner concerns that their royalties have not been paid.
“To date approximately K108 million in landowner royalty payments has been deposited by PNG LNG, into a trust account set up by the Government of Papua New Guinea with the Bank of PNG.
“The money has been safeguarded for landowners with multiple government signatories required before the money can be released.
“As soon as the Government completes the process of landowner identification which is currently underway, all necessary arrangements will be made to disburse the funds to the rightful landowners.”