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Papua New Guinea to reallocate around 20 energy licenses

Staff writer |
Papua New Guinea could reallocate as many as 20 of its energy licenses, many of them in the upstream business with major players standing ready to snap them up, the country's minister of petroleum and energy said.

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Papua New Guinea has reviewed some 100 outstanding licenses to check if they were still in line with requirements and held by solvent companies, Nixon Duban said on the sidelines of an investment day in London.

"We want to be really strong, we want to be ensure that the licenses are not abused and not warehoused by those who don't have the capacity, but rather give them to serious players."

The review had found that about half of the license holders were in breach of conditions like not adhering to regulation, farming out part of the agreement to other companies without permission, or having gone into bankruptcy.

"There are a number of big companies, and a good number of medium size companies (which are affected)," he said, adding he expected some 30 licence holders to be able to fix their issues, though another 20 contracts could be reallocated, some of them still this year.

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