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A new loan application will be re-lodged with the Export Import Bank of China (China Exim Bank) for US$150million (K475M) for the Pacific Marine Industrial Zone (PMIZ) Project in Madang.
This up from the US$90M (K300M) government had initially sought from the bank to commence construction of this multi-million kina project.
This was the update given by the Minister for Trade Commerce and Industry Richard Maru on the project status.
Maru said the increase in the loan size was necessitated by increased costs.
Government had asked that the additional sum it was seeking be tied to its initial loan but this was refused by the China Exxim Bank. "The Exim bank of China is saying that because the cost has gone up, they want us to negotiate for a completely new loan to cater for the higher amount.
“They have asked that we re-lodge our application.
“That application is being finalized by the Department of Treasury. We have already given them all the information that they requested from the department,” Maru said.
While the minister did not state when the application will be lodged, he did say that if, officials from the Department of Trade, Commerce and Industry are required to travel with the team from Treasury that his secretary John Andrias and his officer would accompany them to formally do that.
He had extended his thanks and that of the government to the Chinese government who have assured it will honour its commitment to this project.
“All we need to do is increase the loan amount and that project will be underway again in terms of actual construction,” the minister said.
Meanwhile, Maru had cleared the air of the "transfer"of the PMIZ from the department to Kumul Consolidated Holding (KCH)-which is the government’s business arm.
He said the asset would be transferred to KCH while all policy matters pertaining to the project would remain with the department.
SOURCE: POST COURIER/PACNEWS
Pacific Islands News Association
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