INSIDE: OUR BRIGHT NEW ISSUE 06 | October 2021
CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARDS + CULTURE | FOOD | HEALTH | MUSIC | SPORT
This magazine is all about celebrating the best of Papua New Guinea, and our best was clearly on display at the recent Tokyo Olympics. Overcoming hurdles is something a lot of Papua New Guineans know something about, but the effort of PNG’s eight-strong Olympic team to train, prepare and then compete in Tokyo in the midst of an international pandemic was extraordinary. Our congratulations to them, and to all the people behind them. You can re-live PNG’s Olympics on Page 44. Our Olympians aren’t the only people in this issue who have shown resolve, patience and commitment. Andy Abel’s dream of creating a surfing industry in PNG has taken many years to come to pass, but the Surfing Association of PNG Chairman has been dogged in his approach, taking the time to involve communities in the sport’s development, and arguing for the involvement of both men and women. His remarkable story is on Page 20. Then there’s PNG’s very own cricket team, the Barramundis, who are set to compete in the T20 World Cup in October. They have had to conduct training sessions on Zoom in pursuit of their goal. Finally, there’s the amazing work being done to preserve our wildlife at the Port Moresby Nature Park. There’s so much to be proud of in PNG. One final note about this issue: our all-new PNG Moni section, which starts on Page 53. Whether you’re looking after your family’s financial wellbeing or you’re in business, this section is designed to help you make sense of the world of money and business. We can’t wait to find out what you think of it. As always, please take care and stay COVID-safe.
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OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 3
CONTENTS UP FRONT
Vox pop, should betel nut be banned? 06 Breakfast with fashionista Anna Amos 08 My World, what people are reading, watching and listening to 10 Around Town, exhibitions, markets, fairies and more 12–17 Wisdom, life lessons learnt by a PNG elder 18
Surfing opens up at Bougainville 24
Style File with Lea Firth 30 The hair trend sweeping PNG 31
All the best that POM has to offer: restaurants, bars, hotels and more 32
Key heath issues facing men 34
CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARDS 20
Surfing boss’s master plan for a fair go
Flippin’ good, a new burger store opens in town 36 Restaurant review, Salt at Ela Beach Hotel 37 Tacos made simple 38
Locker Room Chat with sprinter Nelson Stone 48 Howzat! PNG’s T20 World Cup campaign 50
PNG business at a glance 54 Real estate report 56 What you need to know about investing in shares 58 A big push for more SMEs 60 At work with flight attendant Irene Tobudi 62
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A SPLASH OF RED How PNG is catching on to wine
THAT’S A WRAP 39
PNG Now is a free magazine produced by Business Advantage International Pty Ltd in association with
Healthy sweet-chilli chicken recipe
Distributed by Pascoe Promotions, Port Moresby © Copyright 2021, Business Advantage International and contributors. All rights reserved. ADVERTISING INQUIRIES TO BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER Charles Saldanha firstname.lastname@example.org +61 (0) 404 842 472
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Meet some of the Nature Park’s residents
EDITORIAL ADVISORY TEAM Penny Burns, Aaron Chin, Leanne Jorari, Sylvia Pascoe CONTRIBUTORS Cheyenne Abel, Mary Aseari, Paul Chai, Natalie Cholohei, Dusk Devi, Zana English, Bronwen Gora, David James, Leanne Jorari, Godfreeman Kaptigau, Lemach Lavari, Poliap M’Buleau, Gabriella Munoz, Carmel Pilotti, Jason Pini, Peter Schofield (designer), Leilani Stephen, Sally Woollett (proofreader)
OH BROTHER 42
More music from siblings on horizon
COVER Andy Abel, the president of the Surfing Association of PNG, photographed by Cheyenne Abel. See our story, Page 20.
Proudly printed in Papua New Guinea by BizPrint
OLYMPIC DIARY PNG at the Tokyo Games
OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 5
WORD ON THE STREET BY MARY ASEARI
Should betel nut be banned in Port Moresby because it can cause cancer and is a stain on the city?
SHIRLEY MOLE 24, scientific officer, Waigani, Port Moresby
As much as we love betel nut, it causes great impact to the environment and human health. I believe it should be banned for the good of PNG’s future, despite it providing economic benefit to the vendors.
RABONI OAHUI 39, seamstress, Tokarara, Port Moresby
DAVID SOLOMON 52, mechanic, Port Moresby
The government should ban betel nut in Port Moresby because it causes a lot of rubbish and illnesses, such as mouth cancer. The government should, however, build factories in provinces where betel nut is grown so that people can travel to those places to purchase betel nut for the sole purpose of culture-related activities such as bride price ceremonies.
Betel nut should not be banned in Port Moresby because 80% of the population in Port Moresby chews, while 60% of the population relies on betel nut sales as a form of income. If chewers can dispose of their rubbish in the bins provided by the city management, then there will be less betel nut stains in the city. Betel nut does cause cancer, but as individuals we have the power to choose whether to chew or not.
RUTH BURU 23, collections officer, Hohola, Port Moresby
Betel nut should not be banned in the city. It is a part of the ordinary Papua New Guinean’s life and people will still buy and sell it regardless of the ban. Failure to comply with the ban will only result in heavy handed law enforcement. Most betel nut vendors depend on daily sales to provide for their families. It’s their only means of survival. If the ban was imposed, they would have no choice but to still engage in selling betel nut, which brings me back to my first point. 6 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
51, accounts officer, Hohola, Port Moresby
Betel nut must be banned in Port Moresby as well as the rest of the country because it causes a lot of rubbish. Also, betel nut selling at the bus stops creates unnecessary crowds, which makes bus stops a hotspot for criminal activities like pickpocketing and smoking of marijuana. The government should provide other avenues of income for those that rely on betel nut sales as a form of income, such as the production of agricultural products and encouragement of SMEs.
BREAKFAST WITH …
ANNA AMOS FASHION AND TEXTILE DESIGNER BY MARY ASEARI | PHOTOGRAPH: GODFREEMAN KAPTIGAU
Why have you chosen this cafe for breakfast? I chose the Port Moresby Nature Park cafe for breakfast because I don’t like modern structures. I love nature and my peace and quiet, and the cafe has an infusion of all these elements. Do you usually eat breakfast? I don’t usually eat breakfast. As a mum, most times I only prepare breakfast for my kids. Tea or coffee? I’m more of a coffee person. What have you ordered today? I ordered potato wedges and a doughnut – simple yet delicious. Also, as I mentioned I’m a coffee person, so I ordered a cup of coffee to go with my meal. Your fashion label is called AA Tribal. Why is it called that?
Well, ‘AA’ is for my name, ‘Anna Amos’, and because I am into textile, I really want to bring the Papua New Guinean tribal prints out into the international arena and world market.
Anna Amos, wants to introduce Papua New Guinean tribal prints to the world.
Silver Leaf is the definitive Port Moresby dining experience. With lavish interiors, breathtaking views of the city, our fine dining restaurant is the place for any occasion. www.thestanleypng.com Sir John Guise Drive Port Moresby Vision City Waigani PNG
8 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
Call +675 302 8888 to book or email firstname.lastname@example.org
What inspires your designs? Unquestionably my place of origin is my biggest inspiration. I come from the district of Gumini, which is a remote area in Chimbu Province. My place is very remote and is full of natural designs. I’d say the second thing that inspires me is the reaction of the people that follow my work. When they admire my work and give me that ‘wow’ reaction it becomes the driving force and pushes me to create more quality and authentic PNG content. Tell us a bit about your pathway into design. My decision to be a designer was largely influenced by my place of origin and family. My brother graduated from the National Arts School, so he was part of the reason I decided to go to arts school. I got into textiles and graduated with a diploma. I went overseas and then worked with a few non-government organisations in PNG, before joining the University of PNG as a lecturer under the creative arts strand. It took me a while to develop my designing skills and to bring them out in full force for people to enjoy. What are some of the highlights of your design career? Every year I design for the Miss Pacific Islands Pageant PNG. I also take part in the South Pacific Festival of Arts. I have participated in several other international platforms, like the Pacific Fusion Fashion Show in New Zealand and the London Pacific Fashion Week in the UK. Do you think the PNG fashion industry has potential to grow? Yes, definitely. We might not be at the level where developed countries are at in terms of fashion, but if we (as a society)
My place of origin is my biggest inspiration. I come from the district of Gumini. My place is very remote and is full of natural designs.
can colour coordinate the design elements in our everyday wear, or match our accessories with our clothing, that is an indication that we are aware of and awake to the fashion trends that are available. I believe PNG has the potential to grow in the fashion industry and we are getting there, we just need to fine tune. When are you releasing your next collection and what might we expect? My next collection will appear at the Dubai World Expo (opening in October). You should expect to see more tribal patterns. Port Moresby Nature Park’s cafe is open daily from 9am to 4.30pm (5.30pm on Saturdays). The cafe has a large deck in a natural setting and can be accessed without paying the entry fee into the park. See portmoresbynaturepark.org.
A premier restaurant inspired by tradition, crafted for today. Open Every Wednesday - Saturday 6pm - 10pm To make reservations Please Call us on +675 7501 8015
Mumu Bar & Grill Ground Level, Kutubu Convention Centre
OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 9
CHRISTOPHER LAM FASHION CREATIVE & MARKETING MANAGER BY NATALIE CHOLOHEI | PHOTOGRAPH: POLIAP M’BULEAU
What’s the best live music act you’ve ever seen? I saw Adele live in Brisbane, 2017. It was raw and emotional. What’s the best book you’ve read recently? Normal People by Sally Rooney. It was recommended to me by a friend and I found it interesting because it was about how people deal with relationships. Which Papua New Guinean musician or artist do you most admire? I like Mereani Masani; she’s got a great sound and expresses PNG culture so well. Particularly her songs about Morobe Province, and also about holding onto your culture. I have a connection with Morobe because I grew up there and I call it my home town. What is your favourite podcast? Beyond the Narrative, is a podcast by one of my friends in Fiji in which Melanesian storytellers have a talanoa (conversation) about the things that matter to Pacific Islanders, like climate change and culture. What is your favourite movie, ever? Queen of Katwe. It’s about a girl and her friends who live in the slums of Zimbabwe. She emerges as a good chess player
and competes nationally and then internationally. She ends up buying her struggling mother a house. It doesn’t matter where you are from or what adversity you face, there’s hope out there that you can break out from where you are. Have you been binge watching any TV recently? Yes, I’m currently watching How to Get Away with Murder. It’s interesting to see how criminal lawyers try to find every loophole to win a murder case. Have you discovered any apps that you want to rave about? App in the Air is a fun app to track your travels in a year. I use it to track my flight times and review data. Where would you most like to travel next? I would love to explore Bougainville one day soon. I’d go to South Bougainville to the (abandoned) Panguna Mine to see what it’s like now, and also to the famous Pokpok Island. I’ve seen a lot about Bougainville and I’d like to experience the food and meet the people. Christopher Lam produces his fashion brands Barata and Claytn through KVL Studios. He is also the marketing manager for PNG Air.
Join the thousands of Food Lovers in Port Moresby.
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AROUND TOWN BY CARMEL PILOTTI | PHOTOGRAPHS: GODFREEMAN KAPTIGAU & SUPPLIED BY NATURE PARK
Best art on show One of Papua New Guinea’s oldest art institutions, the Moresby Arts Theatre (MAT), recently held an art exhibition and competition to help buoy artists, who are suffering due to the lack of visitors and tourists in the country because of COVID-19. There were works by 56 artists from numerous provinces, with plenty of bold colours and storytelling on show. The three-day exhibition ended with prizes for best painting and sculpture, as well as best woman artist and best young artist. The overall winner was Senton Watai, the winner of the women’s section was Tua Aiari, the sculpture was Leonard Tebegetu, and the youth prize went to Malcolm Maira. Exhibition organiser, Anthony Mason, says the exhibition was organised to assist struggling artists. He says 15 artists sold their works at the exhibition and many others formed connections with potential buyers. “As organisers, we were overwhelmed by the talent of the artists, the generosity of our sponsors, the willingness of those attending to support the artists, and the amazing venue,” Mason told PNG Now. Sponsors that made the exhibition possible were the CPL Foundation, Digicel PNG, Stanley Hotel and Suites, Anitua, Air Niugini, Namba Wan Trophy, 12 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
Moni Plus, BSP, Loloata Island Resort, Prouds PNG and Jacks of PNG. MAT is hoping to run more exhibitions, so keep an eye on the MAT Facebook page.
Some of PNG’s best artists showed their works at the recent Moresby Arts Theatre exhibition and competition.
Fighting fit The recently opened Ekere Fitness Dance Studio at Savannah Heights has a long list of fitness activities on offer, as well as dance and self-defence classes. The Boot Camp and Tabata HIIT (high-intensity interval training) programs are held many times a week, including core and full-body workouts for the more serious fitness enthusiast. Soon to be open is a Fit45 studio (the new fitness craze that is taking the world by storm), with HIIT workouts packed into 45-minute acute sessions. For those who prefer a more
fun and social health workout session, Ekere offers Zumba, Hulanesian fitness, yoga and, the most social: salsa dance classes. Self-defence classes include taekwondo and karate for children, teens and adults and a street-smart self-defence class for women.
Casual rates are 20 kina per session, and membership costs are 300 kina for one month, 1000 kina for six months and 1500 kina for a year. Ekere is on level one of the Stratos Building. More information can be found on the Ekere Fitness Dance Studio Facebook page.
OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 13
Big day out Another successful POM City Markets Motu-Koita event was held at Vabukori village earlier this year, doubling as a great tourism showcase for the community. Apart from the colourful display of products from local SMEs, the coastal villagers offered tours to the local Manubada Island, fishing trips, and entertained with cultural dancing and string-band music, which they pride themselves on. Event organiser, Pascoe Promotions director Sylvia Pascoe, says the series of markets aims to showcase
the tourism potential in the traditional villages of Port Moresby.
To find out more about the POM City Markets Motu-Koita events, follow the POM City Markets Facebook page.
Staying on top of COVID-19 Papua New Guinea’s official website for COVID-19 information is covid19.info.gov.pg. The site updates COVID-19 case numbers in PNG, provides prevention tips and has a 24/7 hotline, 1800 200, if you need advice. Access to the hotline is also available via email, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Prevention tips include:
01 WASH HANDS OFTEN 02 COUGH INTO ELBOW 03 DON’T TOUCH YOUR FACE KEEP A SAFE DISTANCE FROM
05 STAY HOME IF YOU CAN
OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 15
Fairies in the park
The Port Moresby Nature Park held a Disney-inspired fairytale event for youngsters in the spirited age bracket of 3–12. Children were able to escape into an enchanted fairy village, which had been created in the lush grounds of the park.
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The Lae Biscuit Fairies in the Park event, staged over four weeks, invited children to participate in interactive activities and enter a draw to win prizes from sponsors Lae Biscuit Company, Airways Hotel, PNG Air, Holiday Inn and Enzo’s Pizza.
This is one of few events exclusively for children in Port Moresby. Information on future events can be found on the Nature Park’s Facebook page. Meet some of the Nature Park’s permanent residents in our photo feature starting on Page 26.
Go-karts are ‘go’ The Port Moresby Kart Club has recharged, fuelled up and returned to the grid, and is showing no signs of slowing down any time soon. After a long hiatus, club president Yiannis Nicolau is determined to restore the motorsport to its former glory in Port Moresby. Event participation is mainly in the corporate tier due to the costs of purchasing and maintaining a go-kart, and Nicolau says there is always space for more companies to join the on-track action where karts go as fast as 80kmh. The club’s events are at the
ATS Airforce Base at 8 Mile, but in August the club organised a first-of-its-kind public showcase, with racers competing head to head on the two-kilometre Paga Hill ring road.
The club is looking forward to hosting more public races in future, and competitions will continue on a fortnightly basis next year.
WHERE TO FIND US PNG Now has extensive distribution in cafes, hotels and other social hubs. In Port Moresby, this includes Duffy outlets, Airways Hotel, The Hilton and The Stanley (cafes), Port Moresby Chamber of Commerce and Industry, CHM at Vision City, the POM City Markets and Harbourside Night Markets. In Lae, it can be picked up at the Lae Chamber of Commerce and the Lae International Hotel.
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PIONEERING SOCIAL WORKER UME WAINETTI, 67 BY CARMEL PILOTTI | PHOTOGRAPH: GODFREEMAN KAPTIGAU
Ume Wainetti was born at Sewirimabu Village in Daru, Western Province, where her father was a medical orderly. She was schooled in Daru before moving to Sogeri Secondary School for grades 11 and 12. She was the only female in the first batch of social workers to graduate from the University of Papua New Guinea in July 1976. Her first job was as a projects officer with the Office of Village Development. In this role, she worked closely with the National Council of Women (NCW). One of her main tasks was to promote self-reliance and gender equality. The NCW appointed her as its General Secretary in 1988. She was also the National Program Coordinator for the PNG Family and Sexual Violence Action Committee from 2002 to 2017 and is currently a board advisor for the PNG Counselling Association. Fondest memory It is of the times spent with my family sitting in front of our house on Sundays for evening tea and singing hymns. It was with my mum and dad, and my siblings. Advice to a younger self Be guided by God and always look beyond problems to see solutions. Family and community Being a PNG woman, family is everything to me. Not just my immediate family, but my extended family, 18 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
If you want to be respected you must first have self-respect and dignity. which also makes up the community we are a part of. Biggest influence My mum, Bessie Morris, inspired and mentored me, but the other most important woman who was my role model was my grandmother, Daina Mapa. She was a trained pastor and a teacher, an Australian from Murray Island. She was the first female pastor among the first intake to be trained by the London Missionary Society at Vathorato Pastoral College in Central Province. My father, Agiwai Wainetti Anagogomo, also played a very
important role in inspiring me – he believed in me and wanted the best for me and my sisters, and gave us the same opportunities he gave to our brothers. What family taught me My grandmother, mother and father taught me about humility and gender equality, and to always love God and be guided by Him. An important lesson If you want to be respected you must first have self-respect and dignity. Anything you would change I would have liked to pursue postgraduate studies.
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CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARDS
SURFING BOSS’S MASTER PLAN FOR A FAIR GO BY PAUL CHAI | PHOTOGRAPHS: CHEYENNE ABEL (PORTRAITS) & JASON PINI (SURF ACTION)
Andy Abel created the Surfing Association of Papua New Guinea (SAPNG) to bring sustainable tourism to PNG. Thirty years on, his system of fairness is being picked up all over the country in a variety of different ways. It all started in the late 1980s when surf-loving Abel had a revolutionary idea while watching the tragic events of the Bougainville civil war unfold. He knew that PNG had a very valuable, and underdeveloped, resource and it was not buried under the ground. It was the perfect waves that crashed against the coast during the monsoon season. So, he decided to start the SAPNG with a simple principle of fairness. Abel would not make the mistakes of the foreign-owned mining companies whose disregard for the traditional custodians helped to trigger the Bougainville conflict. He knew that when the traditional custodians are marginalised and exploited for access to their natural resources they will eventually clap back. The fact that three decades later the Bougainville copper mine remains shuttered is testimony to that. “I realised I had an opportunity to make a difference in Papua New Guinea in the pursuit of my passion as a surfer,” Abel says. “If one man can shut down a mine with 40% of Papua New Guinea’s GDP, you have to ask a fundamental question: who are the gatekeepers of the resource? And 97% of PNG’s landmass, including three nautical miles of coastline, is owned by the traditional custodians, not the state.” At its core, the SAPNG seeks to develop surf tourism with a community-centred approach, respecting the role of the traditional resource custodians but also 20 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
providing them with income and making sure any tourism has limited impact on traditional village life. The association is sustainable, fair and only goes to places that offer it an invitation. Permission is gained, tourist numbers are controlled, and a levy paid to the locals for the use of their land. Abel’s father is English, and his mother is from Milne Bay, and he credits his upbringing with his success. “As a Papua New Guinean growing up with mixed parentage I have been able to blend these two worlds together,” he says. Starting with a single surf club in Vanimo, the SAPNG now has 500 local surfers nationwide. It has been a rocky road with Abel navigating tribal conflicts, poverty and traditional views but his project recently came full circle when the surf management
It was instilled in me as a young boy that it was my duty to carry on our family legacy in serving the country and people. I chose to do that through surfing.
Andy Abel, the boss of the Surfing Association of Papua New Guinea. OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 21
People plan was accepted in Bougainville, the very region that inspired it. “I told the story (of the creation of the SAPNG) in Bougainville in 2017 when I was invited up there to speak,” Abel says. “I took 50 surfboards to the full house of parliament and gave them a three-hour Power Point. I engaged the community first and in 1972 this is what should have been done with the copper mine.” It took over three decades, but the SAPNG this year achieved the historic signing of the first SAPNG surf management plan with the chiefs and traditional resource custodians of Pokpok Island and the villages of mainland Arawa in central Bougainville. Bringing the SAPNG to Bougainville may be satisfying but Abel does not sit still, his restless surfer nature always looking for the next big wave. He believes that his locals-first approach to natural resources can work like a franchise system that can be applied across a range of different industries. “I have created another tourism product called the integrated management plan which complements the surf management plan and I have set it up in Milne Bay on my mother’s land over a 50-kilometre corridor very similar to the Kokoda Trail, but in this instance it has trekking, bird watching, kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding down my mother’s river with home stays all the way along.” Abel is looking at a similar approach to tourism in Kokoda itself and when wave season (from October to April) is over he has plans to switch this surfing model to diving. “I have written up that policy already that expands the surf management plan to include dive management,” he says. “The communities do surfing in the monsoon season and then diving in the off-season, and the operators have a 12-month operational window.” Abel is also tackling PNG’s inherent gender inequality with his pink-nose revolution, which is pushing the inclusion of women in not only the sport of surfing, but also the running of the surf clubs. The PNG surfing documentary Splinters, directed by Adam Pesce and produced by Emmy Awardwinner Perrin Chiles, captures a tense meeting where Abel meets some pretty harsh resistance to his idea of women being equal. But, with his years of experience dealing with the patriarchal systems of PNG, he manages to convince Vanimo Surf Club and Sunset Surf Club to take 10 surfboards each on the provision that women get equal access to them. 22 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
Top: Andy Abel, on for the ride in Madang. Above: Abel, the architect of PNG’s highly successful surf management system that ensures that locals get a fair share of revenue from surf tourism.
It is agreed and Abel heads back to Port Moresby. But then Abel got a call from one of the female surfers. “I get a phone call that says, ‘Andy those 20 boards you gave to the club, the boys have taken them, and we’ve got nothing’. So I am sitting there in Moresby and thinking how can I be the policeman to distribute boards equally around this country of mine and I had a brainwave.” Abel decided to use the patriarchy against itself by painting half the boards fluorescent pink. “I made it very clear that any boy riding the pink-nose board is a girl,” he says. “Without me having to be a policeman I have empowered these women nationwide. All of those boards, not one single guy will touch those boards as they do not want it to encroach on the masculinity or their warrior status.” Local women surfers hitting the waves on modern, pink-nosed boards is a long way from the maledominated beginnings of the sport where young men would ‘belly surf’ on bits of wood carved from trees or traditional canoes. But it is the end result of Andy Abel using his twin passions or fairness and surfing to bring real change to PNG.
Andy Abel on … His sense of community As the third generation of a pioneering and political missionary family, it was instilled in me as a young boy that it was my duty to carry on our family legacy in serving the country and people. And I chose to do that through surfing. His own legacy When I do pass on I will pass on a happy man, giving the mantle to my son, Cheyenne, who is 19 now. He’s a passionate surfer who is studying medicine. He has got his own ideas, he wants to carry on my legacy nationwide. He wants to introduce another plan that we are working on together, called the health management plan, by using his medical skills and sourcing medical supplies and doctors and training and using our surf management plan
footprint around the country to go in there and empower those communities and help where government is failing medically. The one break he loves Madang is where we hosted the world longboard championship event in 2017 and that is a very spiritual place for me. The late Justice Nicholas Kirriwom (who passed away in March this year from COVID-19) approached me in 2007 to create a surf club and surf tourism, because he had read a lot about my work. I got to know him over the past 13 years to the point where I used to call him ‘Uncle’; he was family to me. So when I go back to Tupira Surf Club now it is an awesome righthander, and it is a very spiritual and emotional place to me.
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BOUGAINVILLE SURF AGREEMENT SIGNED BY PAUL CHAI | PHOTOGRAPH: SUPPLIED BY SAPNG
A Japanese surfer cruises down the line at Pokpok Island.
When international borders re-open there are some amazing reef breaks awaiting surf tourists willing to explore some of Papua New Guinea’s most remote and untouched waves. The Surfing Association of Papua New Guinea (SAPNG) recently signed a surf management agreement in Bougainville with the chiefs and traditional resource custodians of Pokpok Island and the villages of mainland Arawa. The SAPNG Pirung Surf Management Plan was signed by SAPNG President Andy Abel, Chief Peter Garuai of Pokpok Island, SAPNG Executive Theresa Jaintong and Chairlady of Central Bougainville Tourism Association Laurelle Pentanu. The surf management plan develops tourism from the bottom up with the input of the local community. Abel puts a cap on tourist numbers, so it does not impact the region, and pays a levy to the local community for the use of its natural resources. Abel says the area covers seven breaks or “eight if you include the ones for little kids.” A few years ago, he did a reconnaissance and 24 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
surfed all the breaks within a 10-kilometre radius of Pokpok Island and then, on the second trip, took a professional Japanese surfing team of long and short boarders to test the waves. “The Japanese liked that the surf could cater for pro surfers and beginners, and even kids,” Abel says. “They are all reef breaks, left- and right-handers and they can handle waves six foot and above on the passages like Shark Alley.” But it was important to Abel and the SAPNG that it was not all big waves. “I’m thinking it will attract everyone from the professional surfer to the novice, that is why I have spread the plan over 10 kilometres,” he says. “That was a requirement of the Japanese group, they said ‘we have 130 million people in Japan, and they are not all pro surfers’, so we have breaks there that can cater for the novice as well.” Surfers will stay at Uruna Bay Retreat on Pokpok Island, a 10-minute motorboat ride from Kieta, and in keeping with the low-impact nature of the SAPNG the resort can sleep just 12 people.
WALK WITH THE ANIMALS PORT MORESBY NATURE PARK PHOTOGRAPHS: SUPPLIED BY NATURE PARK
The award-winning Port Moresby Nature Park has become one of the biggest attractions in the nation’s capital. The park has more than 550 native animals, many of them rescued from the illegal wildlife trade, or brought into the park as helpless orphans. The COVID-19 pandemic hit the park hard, with visitors and revenue falling sharply in 2020. However, as Port Moresby residents have learnt to live under the new normal, visitation has returned. The park is also receiving ongoing support though its appeal on GoFundMe (gofundme.com/f/port-moresby-naturepark039s-wildlife-appeal), which has allowed it to resume its work in wildlife conservation and research. The park is working on a new Master Plan, which will roll out new wildlife displays, public facilities and an expansion of wildlife rescue and conservation work, providing opportunities for tertiary students and budding researchers to closely study PNG’s wildlife. The park recently won two awards from the Zoo and Aquarium Association of Australia, to add to the awards it won in 2016 and 2018. The latest awards were for ‘best exhibit design’ for the reptile haus, and the ‘engagement’ award for the park’s Snaketastic program. Snaketastic was an education program with the message that snakes are important to the environment. It also promoted snake safety (wear shoes to avoid bites), and demonstrated first-aid for snake bite.
26 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
Right: Maddie is one of the luckiest Pesquet’s parrots in Papua New Guinea. The birds, also known as Dracula parrots, are hunted for their bright-red feathers, which are used in traditional bilas. Maddie was rescued after she was found tied to a tree and is now sitting pretty on the shoulder of keeper Emma Oliver. Below: Cody is another lucky one. The Dorcopsis wallaby is being cared for at the Nature Park after his mother was killed. The marsupials are often targeted by hunters for bush meat.
Left: These two Papuan lorikeets are enjoying the nectar from flowering gingers. There’s nothing they like more. The lorikeets thrive in the moist forests of PNG.
OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 27
Above: A white-lipped tree frog sits on top of the green tree python, thinking she is resting on a vine. Luckily, the python doesn’t eat frogs as they don’t taste very nice because of the mucus that covers their skin. The snakes much prefer a tasty rat. Right: This is a juvenile green tree python, believe it or not. If you’re wondering why it’s yellow, it’s because they only turn green after they are more than a year old. Their colour – yellow or green – provides ideal camouflage in the moss and among the leaves of rainforests. 28 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
Below: Keeper Karo Karua hand feeds Georgie, a Matschie’s tree kangaroo that was rescued from a market in Lae. Georgie is being well cared for at the Nature Park and is part of an international breeding program to help save this endangered species.
Left: Zoey, a baby agile wallaby, was found in her mother’s pouch after the mother was killed for bush meat. A caring member of the public brought her to the Nature Park to be looked after. Zoey is about six months old and needs special milk given to her every three hours until she is old enough to eat grass.
OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 29
STYLE FILE LEA FIRTH, AKA LELE SINGER
BY DUSK DEVI | PHOTOGRAPH: SUPPLIED BY LEA FIRTH
It’s better to have people hate you for being you, than love you for who you’re not.
Lea Firth is an Australia-based singer and performer, from Biak/ Manowari West Papua. Firth is also a “proud mama of three beautiful strong girls” and is expecting a new addition with her husband Mitch Tambo (a well-known pop star and proud First Nations man from the Gamilaraay People of Australia). When Firth is not singing and performing, she is the Artist Executive/PA for Tambo and the Firth Creative Team. “Mitch and I travel to schools through his initiative ‘Walanbaa’, which is about empowering young people, learning about and engaging with Aboriginal and West Papuan culture. I feel blessed to travel the world singing and sharing stories about my culture, and the story of my people of West Papua.” Firth was born to music royalty. Her father, August Rumwaropen, was lead vocalist and lead guitarist of the legendary Black Brothers, famed for their reggae political messages protesting Indonesian policies in West Papua. “They paved the way for many Melanesian and Pasifika artists today and set up the first recording studio in Vanuatu,” says Firth. Speaking of recording, she says: “My sound is island vibes and everything in between. I’m so excited this year to be working on my solo project Voice Of Lele. I don’t want to spoil the surprise, but would love for you all to follow me on Instagram and TikTok to keep up to date with what I am doing and creating.” IG: @voiceof_lele
30 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
Do you follow the Pacific fashion industry? Do you wear Pacific designs? As a proud woman of the Pacific, I am excited about seeing the next generation coming up, celebrating our cultures through fashion. I always feel so proud when I get asked to wear specific garments from Pasifika designers; in a way this makes me feel that little bit closer to home. How would you describe your personal style? One of my biggest style icons would have to be Mary J. Blige. So I am all about bright, vibrant colours, colourful accessories and makeup. I love denim and leather. Do you dress differently when you are in performance mode? When on stage, I like to always have fun and keep it bright and stylish. My intention is to encourage other sisters to break out and feel free to express themselves in what they want to wear, no matter what their size or age. Has the pandemic slowed you down or created a sense of urgency? The pandemic has impacted the live-music scene greatly in Australia. However, with my husband Mitch and our girls, we have made the most of it and had lots of quality family time. We use virtual media and social media to continue to share music. What motto do you live by? It’s better to have people hate you for being you, than love you for who you’re not. Also ... your children see and hear everything.
THE TREND THAT’S SWEEPING PORT MORESBY BY LEANNE JORARI | PHOTOGRAPHS: GODFREEMAN KAPTIGAU
Protective hairstyles have become all the rage in Port Moresby. The hair trend, popularised by women between the ages of 18 to 45, has gone the colourful and retro route. Protective hairstyles tuck hair way in braids, dreadlocks, twists or similar to help protect hair from tugging and pulling and to encourage healthy hair growth. Although it’s hot now, the technique goes back generations, said to have been popularised by braiding in black culture in Africa. Capitalising on this movement, hair salons across Papua New Guinea have been introducing protective hairstyles to their services to accommodate the rising demand that has been fuelled through word of mouth and on social media. One salon that does it brilliantly is the new Pom-City Hair Station. It started as a pop-up shop in the middle of the Vision City Mall and now a newer and bigger location has opened one floor up from the booth. The boutique’s decor is pretty pink, surrounded by flowery walls. The hairstyles are just as impressive. There are cornrows, box braids, crochet braids, faux locs,
Pretty in pink, the Pom-City Hair Station at the Vision City Mall.
coupled with beads and hair cuffs, or jazzed up with trendy hues and tones. As one customer said on social media: “I love everything to do with hair and fashion. I change up my hair with the seasons, so when I found out about this new, pink shop and started following them on social media, I was impressed and decided I had to get my hair done. I was not disappointed.”
CA F E B A KERY COF F EE ROA ST E R SPECIA LTY COFFE E DUFFY CAFÉ LOCATIONS GABAKA ST, GORDONS HARBOURSIDE PRECINCT, TOWN POM INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 31
THE PORT MORESBY GUIDE CAFE CULTURE
☛ Edge by the Sea, marina outlook, alfresco, at Harbour City, facebook.com/edgebythesea. ☛ Jeanz Cafe, great vibe, at the new Gordons Plaza, gordonsplaza.com. ☛ Rainforest Cafe, surrounded by living tropical rainforest wall at The Stanley Hotel, thestanleypng. com. ☛ Deli KC, all-day, particularly good lunches poolside at the Airways Hotel, airways.com.pg.
OUR FAVOURITE BURGERS
☛ Heritage Bar, Monday to Saturday happy hour has free tapas and live entertainment, at Crown Hotel, crownhotel.com.pg. ☛ Port Moresby Yacht Club, where you can enjoy a sundowner as the yachts bob in the water. Non-members need to be signed in by a member, rpyc.com.pg. ☛ Mojo Social, a hip spot for after-work drinks any night of the week, facebook. com/mojosocialeatdrink.
OUR FAVOURITE INDIAN
The rib eye seasoned with herbs, salt and pepper at Bacchus Restaurant at Airways Hotel.
☛ Tasty Bites, traditional Indian in cosy atmosphere, good prices and good wine list, Tel. 321 2222.
Medium-rare rib eye at Rapala Restaurant at Crown Hotel.
A scotch fillet with bone (pictured) called the Rib Cowboy and smoked in a wood oven, at Silver Leaf at the Stanley Hotel.
☛ The Buffalo Burger with two beef patties, melted cheese, gherkin, caramelised onion and aioli is one of the best-loved hamburgers in Port Moresby. There are four Buffalo Burger stores in POM, including the town store in Hunter Street, meathaus.com. pg. The Sanctuary Hotel also does a mean burger, thesanctuaryhotelpom.com.
The 1kg tomahawk with gravy and crispy garlic flakes at Alibi Bar & Grill.
OUR FAVOURITE ASIAN
☛ Fusion 2, in Waigani, go-to dishes include crab and lobster brought in fresh from Kavieng, Tel. 7917 0077.
OUR FAVOURITE JAPANESE
☛ The new Daikoku at Harbourside has a sizzling-hot teppanyaki menu, Tel. 7111 0425.
☛ C t L ( m T ( I S M
OUR FAVOURITE PIZZA
☛ There’s great debate about the best pizza in POM, but we’ve settled for the pepperoni at Mojo Social in the heart of Harbour City, facebook. com/mojosocialeatdrink. It’s 50 kina for eight slices of pepperoni smothered in napoli sauce and mozzarella. Highly recommended are Mr Mike’s Pizza, Enzo’s Pizza and Yellow Captain’s.
☛ Duffy (pictured), three locations in POM, excellent coffee, bakery items, duffypng.com.
☛ The PNG National Museum and Art Gallery at Waigani has artefacts from all 22 PNG provinces, some dating back to the 1800s, museumpng. gov.pg.
DISCLAIMER The hotels, bars, cafes, restaurants and other businesses and activities listed in this guide have been selected on merit, chosen by P
32 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
☛ Ela Beach has space for joggers; the volleyball and basketball courts are free for public use.
☛ The Southside Fitness Centre at Koki has modern equipment and fitness classes, facebook.com/pg/ ssfcpom.
OUT OF TOWN gaming lounge and bar, as well as Emma’s Restaurant where Western and Indian dishes feature. Anyone for a hot and spicy fish curry, or how about tandoori lobster?
☛ The Pyramid Board Riders’ Club at Taurama has private property access to the only serious swell near POM and the city’s only skate ramp, facebook. com/pyramidsurf.
Club Coe has poker machines, pool tables, a mega-screen HD TV, dance floor and funky LED lighting and furniture.
☛ The Royal Port Moresby Golf Club has 18 holes, accepts non-members (there’s a dress code) and hires equipment, royalpomgolf.com.
☛ Free programs and activities from yoga to kickboxing are available through the Active City Development Program, activecityportmoresby.com.
Craft markets are held in the city every Saturday: Laguna Hotel Craft Market (first Saturday of every month); Moresby Arts Theatre Craft Market (second Saturday); Holiday Inn Craft Market (third Saturday); Ela Beach Craft Market (last Saturday).
LATE & LOUD
☛The Lamana Gold Club has a reputation as the ‘party capital’, with resident DJs, live music stations and international artists, lamanahotel.com.pg.
☛ For traditional localstyle PNG cuisine try the Mumu restaurant (pictured) at the Hilton Hotel, hilton.com, and the Sanctuary Hotel and Spa where Chef Donald David is cooking up a storm with his aigir, thesanctuary hotelpom.com.
The hotel is popular with business travellers and has three newly refurbished conference rooms with seating for up to 150. It is one of the biggest conference facilities in East New Britain.
☛ Kokopo: The Gazelle International Hotel has prime position in Kokopo. It’s only minutes from the centre of town next to the beautiful fairways of Ralum Golf Course, and has views over Blanche Bay towards volcanoes and the Duke of York Islands.
Leisure travellers won’t feel left out. Tours include swims with dolphins, volcano visits and Rabaul day trips, gazelleinterhotel.com
The four-star hotel has 52 rooms on two levels. Every premium room has a Juliet balcony from where you can take in those stunning views. There’s a swimming pool (a perfect place for a cocktail), a coffee shop, the Club Coe
☛ Swim laps at Taurama Aquatic & Indoor Centre from 6am, facebook.com/pages/Taurama-AquaticIndoor-Center/504337133075625.
☛ Airways Hotel, one of the best in the Pacific, close to airport, airways.com.pg. ☛ The Stanley (pictured), luxury accommodation adjacent to Vision City Mega Mall, thestanleypng.com. ☛ Hilton Port Moresby, 15 storeys of typical Hilton comfort, hilton.com. ☛ The Sanctuary Hotel and Spa, most spacious twin-share rooms in Port Moresby, handmade furniture, walk-in bird enclosure, thesanctuaryhotelpom.com. ☛ Grand Papua, a centrally located premium hotel with plenty of executive options, grandpapuahotel.com.pg. ☛ Holiday Inn Express, affordable, in Waigani, ihg.com. ☛ The Lae International Hotel has two restaurants, a bar, swimming pool and gym, laeinterhotel.com.
PNG Now writers. The listings are not meant to be comprehensive and are not based on commercial considerations. They represent what we like.
OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 33
KEY HEALTH ISSUES FACING PNG MEN BY BRONWEN GORA
Ask a group of men and another of women when they last saw a doctor and chances are answers between the two are likely to be different – men perhaps unable to remember and women often easily recalling their last consultation. Why? One reason supported by many studies is that ideas about masculine norms make them far less likely to seek medical treatment. Other reasons for men’s reluctance to seek medical advice include a greater propensity for risk-taking behaviours like smoking and drinking, according to a study from Harvard University in the US. Some of the key health issues facing men are: HEART DISEASE Several factors contribute to this rising problem in PNG and number one risk for men. These include high cholesterol, high blood pressure, chronic stress, smoking and drinking alcohol to excess. A poor diet high in processed foods and bad fats contributes enormously to high cholesterol and blood pressure levels, while chemicals in cigarettes damage coronary arteries, strain the heart by making it work faster and increase the risk of blood clots. SMOKING AND LUNG DISEASE PNG has one of the world’s highest rates of cigarette smoking. If you smoke, or are exposed to high levels of wood smoke or other air pollutants, be on the lookout for symptoms right from the start: significant lung damage has usually occurred by the time this insidious disease starts impairing a person’s lifestyle according to leading medical American institution the Mayo Clinic. Top symptoms are ongoing cough, increased mucus in the lungs as the body attempts to trap or block inhaled irritants, shortness of breath and fatigue.
DIABETES High blood sugar levels caused by a bad diet can lead to insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes. (Type 1 diabetes is an immune disease that mostly develops during childhood while type 2 is lifestyle related and common in those over 40 years of age.) Telltale signs of type 2 diabetes are an urge to urinate more than usual, especially at night, increased thirst, extreme hunger, fatigue and irritability. Top risk factors? Obesity, inactivity, high blood pressure and a diet high in processed foods. This is a condition you definitely want to avoid: diabetes can cause heart attack and damage nerves, kidneys, eyes and feet. The good news is it can be treated with medication and lifestyle changes. PROSTATE CANCER Certain cancers are unique to men, and that includes prostate cancer. It is one of the most problematic and painful and in the five most common cancers worldwide, along with colon cancer, and affects sexual function and urine flow. Common symptoms are poor flow of urine, feelings of a blockage and frequent urination without much relief. Prostate cancer is most common in men over 50. Obesity is a leading cause of prostate cancer, which means a diet of fresh foods and exercise are among the best preventatives.
Ideas about masculinity are a big barrier to men’s health checks.
CHECKLIST FOR GOOD HEALTH ☛ Avoid tobacco, alcohol and betel nut, and minimise exposure to wood smoke and pollutants. ☛ Choose fresh vegetables, fruit, legumes, nuts, seeds and fish over processed foods. Limit intake of red meat and processed meats. If gaining weight, ask yourself why. ☛ Move! The World Health Organisation recommends adults do at least 150 minutes to 300 minutes of exercise over a week.
ORAL CANCER AND CHEWING BETEL NUT Oral cancer rates in PNG are among the world’s highest, and betel nut is a major contributor. Once a ceremonial tradition, chewing buai has become highly popular for its stimulant and euphoric effects. But it is downright dangerous: betel nuts contain the highly addictive and carcinogenic compound called arecoline, which means long-term use over several years creates risk of developing oral cancer, signalled by mouth lesions and ulcers.
☛ Reduce stress by exercising, pursuing (healthy) activities you enjoy, getting enough sleep and maintaining good relationships with family and friends. ☛ Seek regular medical check-ups, at least once or twice a year. And if experiencing unusual aches and pains, book in with a doctor as soon as possible.
OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 35
NEW BURGER STORE OPENS BY LEILANI STEPHEN | PHOTOGRAPHS: LEILANI STEPHEN & SUPPLIED BY THE DIRTY KITCHEN
Left: A juicy quadruple beef burger from The Dirty Kitchen. Above: Chef Darcy Miguel. Top: A crunchy chicken burger.
With its juicy half-pound hamburgers, secret cheese sauce and specially made semibrioche buns, budding diner The Dirty Kitchen is quickly gaining a reputation for some of the best burgers in Port Moresby. The store, already at Ela Beach and Boroko, opened another outlet in Gordons in September. On its menu are the popular cooked-to-order Belhat Chicken burgers, stuffed with crunchy fillets and sweet pickles, and the signature Dirty Beef, a plump, textured patty griddled in a perfect 75:25 ratio of meat to fat – both served with chips. There are also running specials such as the Cheesy Bacon Belhat, which contains fried bacon bits, and the Steak Onion Mushroom, layered with strips of mediumrare meat and caramelised onions. 36 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
Other favourites include Tex Mex prawn tacos and – get this – fried chicken with waffles. Chef Darcy Miguel will also do customised burger fillings, so just about anything goes. Chioma Agwu Kalu, 16, holds the
The Dirty Kitchen is quickly gaining a reputation for some of the best burgers in Port Moresby.
record of 27 minutes for eating a nine-patty burger in The Dirty Burger Challenge. If you beat this by eating a 10-patty burger in the allotted time of 35 minutes you will get the 175 kina meal for free, a T-shirt that says ‘I am a record-holder of The Dirty Burger Challenge’, and a sponsored Facebook post with your name and photo. Miguel says there’s more fun to come, with a keto burger “in the works”. It will comprise a low-carb bun made of psyllium husk and coconut flour, as well as a vegan variation. The Dirty Kitchen, Soare Street, Gordons, open 9am to 9pm Monday to Saturday; Ground Floor, ADF Haus, Ela Beach, open 9am to 9pm Monday to Saturday; Hagwa Street, Boroko, open 9am to 6pm Tuesday to Sunday.
SALT RESTAURANT ELA BEACH HOTEL BY ZANA ENGLISH | PHOTOGRAPHS: GODFREEMAN KAPTIGAU
Last year was one of the toughest ever for businesses as they grappled with the COVID-19 pandemic, however the Ela Beach Hotel took the opportunity to reinvent its beachside brasserie into the new and improved Salt Restaurant. Upon entry, I couldn’t help but take a moment to soak in the atmosphere and appreciate the modern vibe of the restaurant, which overlooks the beachfront. It is a simple but sophisticated interior – one that suits the beachside, that’s for sure. The menu varies from Asian to Pacific flavours. For my entree, I ordered the tom yum kung soup, which is a classic hot-and-sour Thai specialty. From the first taste, my mouth was bursting in a spicy and zesty feast of flavours. I tried two main dishes. The first, a classic penne pasta with carbonara sauce, was well balanced in taste and texture. It came with garlic bread fresh out of the oven – perfect. The second dish, mild spiced Goan curry prawns, is for anyone who adores spicy seafood. Its flavours come primarily from tamarind and coconut and the prawns were juicy and tender. For dessert, I chose the layered Ela Beach opera cake. This classic French cake is a work in six acts. Its layers consist of a Papua New Guinean premium chocolateinfused sponge cake, a vanilla
Top: Salt Restaurant has an Asian-Pacific menu. Above: Salt has a modern vibe at the beachfront. Below: One of the wok-fry mains.
cake soaked in Goroka Arabica coffee syrup, galip nut nougat, a berry compote, and coffee jelly. It’s served with a side of vanilla ice cream. TEL. 321 2100 ONLINE coralseahotels.com.pg OPEN 6am to 10pm daily STYLE Asian and Pacific cuisine. GO-TO-DISH Goan curry prawns (52 kina). PRICES Salads 30–60 kina, entrees 35–60 kina, wok-fry mains 25–52 kina, pasta 40–55 kina, burgers and sandwiches 35–45 kina, specials and seafood 110–120 kina.
OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 37
MEXICAN STREET FOOD GROUND BEEF TACOS BY HAL DENTE
Serves 4 Easy to make Tacos are thought to have originated in the 19th century in the silver mines of Mexico. The miners of that time would use dynamite wrapped in paper to blast through rock and the explosive charges were called ‘tacos’. One of the first descriptions of a taco as a food (not an explosive) is tacos de minero (miner’s taco). It consisted of marinated meat, onion, salsa and lime juice wrapped in a soft tortilla. Americans adopted tacos in 1905, and since then they have become westernised and one of the most popular street foods in the world. Taco Tuesdays have become a part of US culture, especially in California, with many Americans going out on Tuesday night’s to eat cut-price tacos offered by restaurants. But whether you’re munching into a taco on a Tuesday night in Los Angeles, on the streets of Tijuana, or in the kitchen of a Port Moresby home, you’re assured of a flavour bomb. Tacos can be wrapped in a soft tortilla or hard shells. For our recipe here, we’re using hard shells that can be bought in packets at the supermarket.
INGREDIENTS 500g good-quality ground beef Dash of olive oil 2 garlic cloves Half an onion, diced 1 tsp chilli powder 1 tsp cumin 1 tsp paprika 2 tbsp tomato paste Pepper to taste 12 hard-shell tortillas
FOR THE TOPPING
Shredded cheese Diced tomatoes Shredded lettuce Coriander Guacamole Sour cream Jalapenos or thinly slice red chilli Mexican salsa sauce
HOW TO DO IT
01 Put onions in a pan with olive oil on medium to high heat. 02 Add the beef when the onions are becoming soft. 03 When the beef is browned add the spices and mix into the meat, along with the tomato paste. 04 Simmer for about 15 minutes, then serve into hardshell taco shells that have been warmed in oven for a few minutes. 05 Add your favourite toppings to the meat mixture.
HOW TO MAKE GUACAMOLE
Mash and mix an avocado with some finely diced onion and tomato, salt and lemon juice.
Substitute the beef for shredded carrots and zucchini, or refried beans and chickpeas.
FOR SEAFOOD LOVERS
Substitute the beef for prawns. Smaller, bitesize prawns are best.
ARE THEY HEALTHY?
Probably not, but as celebrity chef Jamie Oliver says: “They’re crunchy, messy and great fun to eat.”
38 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
THAT’S A WRAP
HEALTHY VEG AND SWEET-CHILLI CHICKEN BY CARMEL PILOTTI | PHOTOGRAPHS: GODFREEMAN KAPTIGAU
Serves 6 Easy to make (but chicken is best marinated overnight) Light lunches are quite the thing these days, with health-conscious generations seeking easy recipes for busy days. Local catering SME Abus na Kumu has provided this simple recipe for PNG Now readers to try at home, with fresh vegetables from your local market.
WHAT YOU’LL NEED
6 naan bread 3 chicken breasts (deboned) Marinade Fresh vegetables from the market Sweet-chilli sauce
FOR THE NAAN BREAD 2 cups plain flour 1 teaspoon salt 1 cup water
FOR THE MARINADE
Half cup soy sauce 2 tbsp fish sauce 1 clove garlic (finely chopped) 1 fresh ginger (grated)
FOR THE VEG
2 carrots sliced into strips 2 large capsicums roughly chopped 1 cucumber (sliced into strips) 1 bunch shallots 2 lettuces
HOW TO DO THE NAAN
Naan is an Indian unleavened bread, meaning it does not contain yeast.
01 Mix the plain flour, water and salt in a bowl and knead into a dough. Break into six even pieces, roll and flatten into round discs slightly bigger than your palm. 02 Fry lightly in a dry pan until both sides start to blister and turn a light brown colour, then set aside.
HOW TO DO THE MARINADE
This is a simple marinade. For maximum tenderness and flavour absorption allow the chicken to marinate in the fridge overnight.
01 Mix the soy sauce, fish sauce and finely chopped fresh ginger and garlic and rub thoroughly into the chicken breasts. 02 Add any of your favourite spice mixes, such as cajun or Chinese Five Spice.
HOW TO DO THE CHICKEN
After it has marinated overnight, place the chicken on a hot barbecue grill and cook through. Slice into strips to divide among the six naan.
HOW TO DO THE WRAP
01 Set your naan bread out on a chopping board. 02 Fill with whole lettuce leaves, then sliced chicken pieces, carrots, capsicum, cucumber and finally shallots. 03 Add as much sweet-chilli sauce as you want. OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 39
A SPLASH OF RED (OR WHITE) HOW PNG IS CATCHING ON TO WINE BY PAUL CHAI | PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPH: SUPPLIED BY LOLOATA
Wine appreciation is on the rise in Papua New Guinea, so we asked Loloata Resort sommelier and food and beverage manager Kannapan Jayakumar about what people are drinking and his favourite drops. Jayakumar was born in India, but it was when he ended up working at a wine bar in Dubai that he discovered a love of wine that has become his career. In typical Dubai extravagance, the Oeno wine bar in the Westin Hotel had over 800 bottles of wine for him to recommend and 80 different kinds of cheese to pair it with. After being promoted to wine supervisor, he moved to Savannah, Georgia, in the US where he decided to commit to studying wine and is now a certified sommelier from the Court of Master Sommelier in the US. Jayakumar is very happy with his role at Loloata. “This job is a dream,” he says. “Working on the island, especially in these tough days where people can’t travel outside of PNG, and meeting new people every day and talking about wines and their travel experience, is the best part of being a hotelier.”
Kannapan Jayakumar on … More people in PNG are switching to wine from the usual beer and cocktail culture. What is driving this change is that there are more grape varietals available in the PNG market than ever before. Also a lot of people are learning about wine from the expats that they work with, at team dinners and cocktail receptions. The biggest challenge has been getting over the mindset that wine is for the rich. Most wine drinkers in PNG prefer Australian and New Zealand wines especially shiraz, cabernet and sauvignon blanc. Most wines in PNG are imported from Australia, New Zealand and also a few South African ones. There is a small share of European wines as well. 40 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
There are more wine options available in the PNG market than ever before. KANNAPAN JAYAKUMAR SOMMELIER, LOLOATA RESORT
Penfold’s and Jacob’s Creek tend to dominate the market and they are very popular in this part of the world as they have almost all grape varieties in their portfolio with a wide price range. Customers are also asking me for pinot gris, viognier and a few have even asked me for Californian zinfandel. Zinfandel usually means a rose, or blush, wine. It is a unique grape that I enjoyed when studying in the US. It is light and high in acidity and I like to have a glass with my lamb rack. My favourite wines at Loloata Resort (loloataislandresort.com) include Cloudy Bay pinot noir with salmon, and Veuve Cliquot by the pool. PNG has a diverse climate and rich soil in the highlands. I would love to see someone who really has a passion for wine-making take the first step towards a local winery with small-batch production.
WINE CLASS Learn these well-known wine styles and you are on your way to being your own sommelier.
SHIRAZ Very popular in Australia, shiraz (or syrah) is bold and fruity but is also known to be peppery. It goes well with spicy food.
CABERNET This French varietal is popular in Bordeaux and the most planted variety of grape worldwide. Cabernet is the go-to wine if you are having steak.
SAUVIGNON BLANC Originating in Bordeaux, but popularised in New Zealand, sauvignon blanc is crisp, dry and refreshing.
PINOT GRIS A German variety of white wine, pinot gris is a spicy, full-bodied wine.
VIOGNIER A French white wine variety, viognier is light and pairs very well with seafood.
ZINFANDEL Popularised in America, zinfandel has notes of strawberry or cherry and is great in the sun. OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 41
MORE MUSIC FROM SIBLINGS ON THE HORIZON BY LEANNE JORARI | PHOTOGRAPH: GODFREEMAN KAPTIGAU
What do you get when you mix three brothers, good music and talent? You get the boys from 911, of course. If you’ve listened to the radio anytime in the past few years, you’ve most certainly heard their catchy song Perfect Storm. It’s a song the group of brothers wrote, produced and sang right from their home. That is also where the group’s name comes from, their home address (lot and section numbers, combined) here in Port Moresby. Daniel, Jason and Juju Romney (currently in Australia) are the boys from 911. They write and produce all their music under their very own music label, 911 Music. The eldest, Daniel, is the genius behind many of the group’s songs. He says he gets his inspiration from just about anything he sees and hears. “I draw inspiration from literally anywhere. What draws my eyes, my ears … I try to put it in my work.” Perfect Storm is a classic example of his ingenuity. The track was the group’s first original song and features R&B beats that crescendo with hints of electronic music. “The song was a combination of a bunch of things. We had just heard Kalin White’s Take Your Time and it had one of those heavy R&B beats. I liked that. I mimicked that and came up with a couple of chords,” Daniel says. With clever lyrics like ‘Cloudy with a chance of your body on me tonight. Change your weather forecast and your plans tonight,’ sung over the tasty beats, it’s no wonder the boys have a strong female fan base. “At that time, I had been mulling over a way to work some poetry written by Yvette Renagi (a Papua New Guinean poet) into our songs,” Daniel says.
“She had just released a series of short stories, six-word stories, and the one I liked the most was ‘thunder thighs, he loved the storm’. I thought they were the perfect lyrics to tie to the beat I had just worked on. We wrote most of the song’s lyrics, but it was in reference to that short story.” The group’s first big gig was at a club concert, early last year, before the COVID-19 pandemic hit hard. The group opened for Jamaican-American singer Nyanda, of Brick & Lace fame. The pandemic has put a pause on plans for more gigs; sadly, it’s a common trend for artists who primarily depend on live gigs for income. Thankfully for 911, the brothers have full-time jobs that they put their focus on while waiting out the pandemic. Most of the group’s songs can be found on their official YouTube channel. Whatever You Want is a sexy, ‘Miguel-esque song that could easily be a fast hit, while ‘Wait’ is more of a sweet ballad over a keyboard melody, which incorporates some lyrics in Tok-Pisin. PNG can expect more from the boys from 911 in the coming months. “We’ve been working on some stuff the past year and we’re planning on releasing an EP,” Jason says. “It was originally an album that was supposed to be released at the end of 2020, but due to the pandemic and timing not being on our side, we had to push it back. We’re also looking to do a music video from the EP to be filmed by our good friend, Anxious Coconut (Godfreeman Kaptigau, the photographer of this story).”
We’ve been working on some stuff the past year and we’re planning on releasing an EP.
42 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
Perfect Storm and 911’s other hits can be found on streaming websites and apps, including Spotify and Apple Music.
911 brothers Dan (left) and Jason, keen to do more live gigs once the COVID-19 pandemic allows. OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 43
OLYMPIC DIARY PNG AT THE TOKYO GAMES BY LEMACH LAVARI | PHOTOGRAPHS: GETTY IMAGES & SUPPLIED
Flagbearers Dika Toua and Morea Baru lead PNG’s Olympic team into Tokyo’s Olympic Stadium for the 2020 Games.
DAY Friday, July 23 Papua New Guinea’s Olympic team marched into Tokyo’s Olympic Stadium with weightlifters Dika Toua and Morea Baru carrying the flag. For the first time in Olympic history, each nation was allowed two flag-bearers, a man and a woman. Because of COVID-19 restrictions the 68,000seat stadium was near empty, but the Papua New Guineans were in good company in the parade of nations with athletes from 205 competing countries. Japan’s tennis champion Naomi Osaka lit the Olympic cauldron. Major sponsorships were announced for the PNG team in the lead-up to the Games, with Trukai chipping in 250,000 kina and SP Brewery 143,000
44 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
kina. Jacks of PNG sponsored the team’s uniform, Mama Kaisa supplied liklik bilums and Mel Donald the PNG face masks.
DAY Saturday, July 24 Veteran weightlifter Dika Toua was again centre stage, this time setting a record by becoming the first female weightlifter to compete in five Olympics. “It’s an amazing feeling. You know, when you think about the Olympic Games, your dream is to go to one and maybe the second one,” Toua, 37, said. “I’ve never imagined in a million years I’d make it to my fifth.” She had previously lifted in Sydney, Athens, Beijing and London.
On this day, Toua competed in the Group B 49kg division, lifting 167kg to finish fourth in her group and 10th overall. The international news agency Reuters asked Toua about the next Olympics in Paris in 2024. “I am not getting any younger,” she responded. “But backstage in the warmup room, all the other athletes joked: ‘See you in Paris, Dika’!”
DAY Sunday, July 25 Morea Baru, competing in his second Olympics, lifted 265kg in the men’s Group B 61kg division and finished 10th overall. Boxer John Ume was drawn against Australia’s Harry Garside in the men’s lightweight 63kg bout. He lost to Garside, the eventual bronze medallist, with a scorecard of 27–30, and placed 17th overall. “I thought John’s defence was really strong,” his coach Mark Keto said. “We got some really good feedback from the Australian coaches who heaped praise on John.” Ume was PNG’s 14th boxing representative at the Olympics. Sailors Rose-Lee Numa and Teariki Numa started
THE HONOUR BOARD PNG’S ATHLETES AT THE TOKYO OLYMPICS Dika Toua Weightlifter Morea Baru Weightlifter John Ume Boxer Teariki Numa Sailor Rose-Lee Numa Sailor Ryan Maskelyne Swimmer Judith Meauri Swimmer Rellie Kaputin Long Jumper OFFICIALS Tamzin Wardley Chef De Mission Asiani Vagi Administration Officer Chris Amini High Performance Analyst Dr Kapua Kapua Chief Medical Officer Mathew Natush Physiotherapist
OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 45
Sport their campaigns, competing in the women’s and men’s laser events respectively. Each raced twice a day for five days on Enoshima Yacht Harbour.
DAY Tuesday, July 27 At the Tokyo Aquatics Centre, swimmer Ryan Maskelyne finished second in his 200m breaststroke heat. He set a personal best time of 15.33 seconds and also broke his own national record. Overall, he finished 32nd. “To go out and do a personal best and do it at the Olympics is pretty special,” Maskelyne said.
DAY Friday, July 30 Swimmer Judith Meauri won her heat of the 50m freestyle and along the way set a personal best time of 27.56 seconds. The two-time Olympian finished 53rd overall (from 84 starters) in the event that was eventually won by Australia’s golden girl Emma McKeon, who won seven medals at these Games. Sailors Rose-Lee Numa and Teariki Numa completed all 10 of their races in the men’s and women’s laser events.
46 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
Neither made it into the finals, however both were widely praised for their sailing, which included some tough conditions caused by a typhoon off the coast of Japan. Rose-Lee was also hampered by an Achilles injury. “Rose-Lee and Teariki have made big improvements in many aspects of their sailing,” coach Danny Fuller said. He said some of the biggest improvement by the siblings had been achieved in the highly technical aspects of the sport.
DAY Sunday, August 1 Long jumper Rellie Kaputin competed in the qualifying rounds, jumping 6.4m, just two centimetres shy of her season best jump of 6.42m. She finished 11th in Group A and placed 19th overall (from a field of 30 athletes). “Rellie was up against top athletes that compete regularly at Diamond League level,” coach Philip Newton said. “She was the lowest-ranked athlete and still outperformed some of the more established athletes.” Kaputin is now focusing on the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.
DID YOU KNOW ☛ Team PNG competed in its 11th Games after first competing in Montreal in 1976. The team comprised eight athletes in five sports. ☛ Among the athletes competing for Syria was 12-year-old table tennis player Hend Zaza, the youngest competitor at the Tokyo Olympics. ☛ The postponement of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics was only the fourth time since 1896 that the Olympics did not happen as scheduled. The other occasions were during the world wars, in 1916, 1940 and 1944. ☛ The 2021 Olympics in Tokyo will still be branded ‘Tokyo 2020’. ☛ There were 339 gold medals awarded across 33 sports during the 16-day Games.
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Our Bank. Our People. OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 47
LOCKER ROOM CHAT NELSON STONE SPRINTER BY LEMACH LAVARI | PHOTOGRAPH: LEMACH LAVARI
Papua New Guinean sprint king Nelson Stone blazed the track representing PNG internationally for over a decade before he retired in 2019. He competed in the 400 metres at the London Olympics in 2012 and at the 2015 Pacific Games he won three gold medals and a silver medal in the 400 metres, the 4x100 metre relay, the 4x400 metre relay and the 200 metres. The charismatic sprinter holds the national records for the 100-, 300- and 400-metre events. Since his retirement, the champ has been involved in shaping the next group of PNG sprinters. How are you involved in athletics now? I started Nest Athletics Club last year. It is an affiliate of the Port Moresby Athletics Association. I provide training and mentoring to anyone who is interested, with no cost other than one’s own determination and dedication. Why no fees? I am passionate about the sport and I feel you can’t put a price on a dream. This is my way of giving back and providing an opportunity. Who are PNG’s emerging sprinters? There is a lot of talent coming through, including Leroy Kamau. He has been under my coaching for a while and, last year, at the West New Britain Athletics Championships, he beat my 2015 Pacific Games time in the 200 metres with a time of 21.15 seconds. Leroy has shown great potential and is on his way to make his mark in the sport. 48 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
You are an Olympian, how does that feel? The Olympics is the pinnacle of sport, and for me to go to London was a dream come true. It had a huge impact on my character and on how I presented myself in public as an Olympian. The experience has changed me a lot as a person, athlete and now as a coach. It has given me a sense of pride and leadership. You are also involved in rugby. What does that involve? I am the strength and conditioning trainer for the champion semiprofessional rugby league team, the Hela Wigmen. It has been a privilege to share my experience with the Wigmen for three years now. I am also a gym instructor at the Sir John Guise Stadium gymnasium. As a gym instructor, I look forward to interacting with different people.
What is your personal training routine? I do strength and cardio every morning for 30 minutes. This involves lifting weights and running. I train from 5am to 5.45am and begin work with my clients at 6am. Who do you look up to in sport? Former world heavy weight champion boxer Muhammad Ali is an inspiration to me. Ali is not just a boxer, he is a humanitarian and a peace-maker, and he carries himself courageously and respectfully. Those qualities inspire me.
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HOWZAT! PNG TAKES ON THE WORLD
BY PAUL CHAI | PHOTOGRAPH: SUPPLIED BY CRICKET PNG
Papua New Guinea’s T20 cricket side, the Barramundis, was getting ready to depart for the Middle East to compete in the World Cup in October when PNG Now went to press. The Barramundis will have the eyes of the world on them as the cricketing underdogs among the 16 teams in the World Cup, including powerhouses England, India, New Zealand and Pakistan. “We are going to be the story of the T20 World Cup because a lot of people don’t even know where Papua New Guinea is,” says Greg Campbell, the chief executive officer of Cricket PNG. “When we qualified (into the World Cup in Dubai in 2019) Ian Bishop, the former West Indian fast bowler, was commentating and he said, ‘what a story this will be, PNG making the World Cup’.” It has been a long road with the team nearly qualifying in 2015. The next step is doing well. “The first game of the series against Oman will set the tone,” Campbell says. “If you win two out of three you progress to the final round, which is playing all the full members.” But it is Bangladesh that the PNG team is really focussed on as the most difficult to beat in their group. And COVID-19 has made sure 50 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
PNG’s T20 touring squad of players and officials, just prior to flying overseas for the World Cup.
this is no normal competition. The Barramundis have a new coach in Carl Sandri, an Italian-Australian who has coached and played for both those countries, but he has yet to set foot in PNG due to COVID-19 restrictions. “Carl has had a hard job, he was employed in March and has done everything by Zoom,” Campbell says. “So he will meet the players for the first time when we meet in Dubai on the way to Oman. He is Zooming every day, watching the games online and doing virtual coaching.” Despite that, Campbell reports that “the boys are up for it” and he is excited for the world to see
THE DRAW PNG v Oman, October 17 PNG v Scotland, October 19 PNG v Bangladesh, October 21
PNG’s naturally “flamboyant” cricket game. Most Barramundis have grown up playing cricket in their streets and villages, they are all-rounders who are not afraid to smash out a boundary, and Campbell hopes that success in the World Cup could help the sport grow in PNG. “Doing well in Dubai and Oman guarantees you the next World Cup back in Australia but it also sets up the community cricket back home,” he says. “We probably have 3000 kids every year interested in cricket through the BSP School Kriket Program and hopefully it will push that number even higher. Financially it will make a difference, too, but most of all it will put cricket on the map for PNG.” To keep up to date with the Barramundis at the World Cup, see t20worldcup.com.
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54 PNG BUSINESS AT A GLANCE Overseas lessons for the coffee industry Bank pledges money for SMEs Businesses urged to join COVID-19 fight
56 PROPERTY REPORT New housing estate takes shape What does your ideal house look like?
60 BIG PUSH FOR SMEs Interview with John Pora, chairman of SME Corp
62 AT WORK WITH … Air Niugini flight attendant Irene Tobudi
OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 53
PNG BUSINESS AT A GLANCE BY GABRIELLA MUNOZ & DAVID JAMES
Coffee lessons from overseas Papua New Guinea has the potential to become one of the top coffee producers in the world, according to Dr Eugene Ezebilo, the deputy director of research at the Papua New Guinea National Research Institute. PNG ranked 18th in coffee production in 2020 and contributed 0.5 per cent to the world’s coffee. Coffee is one of the most tradeable agricultural commodities in the world, says Dr Ezebilo, and it plays an important role in several economies such as PNG. Coffee provides jobs for more than two million people in PNG and generates government revenue. But Dr Ezebilo says there are several problems facing the industry in PNG. Most of the coffee trees have passed their economic productive age and most smallholder coffee growers do not have access to extension services as well as processing facilities. He says that if the intention of PNG is to become one of the top coffee-producing countries in the world, it should consider drawing lessons from the top five coffee-producing countries. Among the lessons, he says: ☛ Coffee plantations can trigger an increase in
coffee production and profit, as shown by Brazil. ☛ There is a need for governments to encourage modernisation of coffee production systems and to support coffee farmers through a loans facility with low interest rates. ☛ More funds are needed for research in areas such as the development of new coffee varieties, high-quality specialty varieties of coffee and farm management practices, as evident in Vietnam, Indonesia and Brazil. Dr Eugene Ezebilo’s comments were part of a research paper that he wrote, called Strategic initiatives to boost the competitiveness of coffee production in Papua New Guinea.
Newcrest Mining posts record profit PNG’s largest gold miner, Newcrest Mining, has lodged record profits for the 12 months ending June 30, thanks to higher gold and copper prices and lower operating costs. The company posted a record $US1.164 billion (4.07 billion kina) profit in its 2021 financial year, which is 55% 54 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
higher than for the previous financial year. Newcrest’s revenue from gold was up 9% in spite of slightly lower gold production, while its copper revenue was up by 46% and its silver revenue up by 63%. By contrast, its operating costs were down by 11%.
Money for SMEs Kina Bank has pledged 50 million kina to support local small and medium businesses. The funds will be available at a concessional variable interest rate of 4%. Greg Pawson, CEO of Kina Bank, said: “We recognise that we are in challenging times and also that business is a key cornerstone of the economy.
Through giving strong support to business we are providing an environment for it to consolidate, grow and prosper. “This is about money for innovation and growth, while at the same time being a good corporate citizen.” Kina has removed several fees to make its business loans more attractive.
Kina Bank has eye on Fiji Kina Bank has announced that it has received a notification from the Reserve Bank of Fiji conditionally approving Kina’s application to conduct business in Fiji as a commercial bank. Kina has moved to acquire Westpac Fiji.
Employers urged to help with COVID-19 Businesses in Papua New Guinea can play a key role in helping their workers make an informed decision about COVID-19 vaccination, according to Dr Ann M. Clarke, the project manager at the not-for-profit Businesses for Health PNG (B4H). At the end of May, a survey asked 281 PNG students if they would like to be vaccinated with the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine. The results, published on the Devpolicy blog, showed that 46% were ‘unsure’, 48% said ‘no’ and 6% replied ‘yes’. Similarly, a recent informal reader survey by newspaper The National found that 77% of respondents said ‘no’ and 23% said ‘yes’ to taking the vaccine (this survey didn’t give respondents the ‘unsure’ option). Information about COVID-19 vaccine availability has generated confusion in the PNG population, explains Dr Clark. She says that the rush to deliver the vaccine has created doubt, misinformation and suspicion among the population. The key to higher vaccine uptake is therefore
clear and practical information. “It’s not about hesitancy,” she says. “The questions are: is there a vaccine for me? Is it distributed to where I am? What is the opening time for the clinic?” Employers need to be able to answer these questions clearly, she says. The business community in PNG has been involved in health awareness campaigns before, for illnesses such as HIV/AIDs and
tuberculosis, and she says it can help encourage more COVID-19 vaccinations. In PNG’s National Capital District, she explains, COVID-19 vaccinations are being given at the Rita Flynn Stadium in Boroko. In the other provinces, provincial health authorities are responsible for the roll out. Businesses need to contact their local health authority to get the correct information. Another factor that can help with vaccine uptake is a company’s history of talking about health with its employees. Dr Clarke says that some companies in PNG have clear health policies. Some have worked with B4H previously to address tuberculosis, and in this case, she says, B4H can go to deliver COVID-19 vaccination education sessions for staff. Employers can’t force others to do as they are told, but companies do have the opportunity to explain the advantages. For more information, see businesses4health.com, which features a COVID-19 toolbox for employers. OCTOBER 2021 PNG NOW 55
PROPERTY REPORT WITH ROBERT UPE
The new Valley Estate housing estate is taking shape at Gerehu. There are seven house options available, ranging from threebedroom townhouses to fivebedroom standalone houses. Home and land packages start at 495,000 kina at the estate, which will also include a commercial hub with shops.
just outside town. Yumi Yet Real Estate says it has over 800 rental properties, 600 land titles and four lodges in its portfolio. Present at the opening of the newly acquired hotel was the Mayor of Alotau, Peter Elliot, who welcomed Yumi Yet to operate in town.
Prominent real estate businessman, Eke Lama, owner of Yumi Yet Real Estate Limited, has acquired the Alotau International Hotel, now renamed as the Alotau Bay Hotel. This is his second property in Alotau, following the 2019 purchase of Yumi Yet Lodge,
What does your ideal house look like? According to a survey by Hausples.com.pg, Papua New Guineans have a preference for three-bedroom houses made with bricks and concrete. They like the house to be high set in a suburb like Waigani, Gerehu or Boroko,
56 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
with a land size of 300 to 500 square metres. The findings are in Hausples’ 2020 Real Estate Survey, which questioned about 2000 people and noted that there is increased interest in prefabricated and kit homes. The survey says 35% of people questioned preferred bricks and concrete, but also 35% liked steel frames and modern materials. Only 22% said they preferred timber houses. The preference for three bedrooms was expressed by 50.80% of respondents, while 35.69% preferred four bedrooms. The survey also said that most households have between four and six people living in them.
INVESTING IN SHARES WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW BY DAVID JAMES
JMP Securities is one of the two registered stockbroking firms in Papua New Guinea. We spoke with the Managing Director, Lars Mortensen, about what is involved with buying and selling shares on the PNGX, the country’s stock exchange. Can you explain what the stock market is? The stock exchange, the PNGX, regulates the trading of shares so they can be bought and sold. It is essentially the marketplace for selling shares to the public. The way the market functions is that you have licenced stockbroking companies to facilitate the trading of shares. There are currently two participating stockbroking firms in Papua New Guinea, Kina Securities and JMP Securities. 58 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
Do you have to use a broker to buy shares on the PNGX? You can do off-market transactions, but it takes weeks and weeks. The stock exchange provides a ready market in shares and is a gathering place for all sellers and all buyers. It creates the stability of what the sellers are willing to sell at and the buyers are willing to buy at. What is the brokerage fee? It varies. Our standard brokerage fee is one per cent of what is bought and sold. Clients who trade in large volumes of shares get a discount. How does buying shares compare with keeping money in the bank? The value you get from investing in shares is usually a combination of dividend income and capital growth (increase in the value of the shares). In a bank account there is income, but no capital growth. The problem is that buying shares is riskier than money in the bank, so you are compensated for that risk with potentially
greater profits. You should have a diversified investment portfolio, and shares should be a part of your overall wealth, but not be all of your overall wealth. Your portfolio should be a combination of shares, government securities, bank deposits and your residential home. I would be very reluctant to advise anyone to put their only dollar of savings into the stock market. You can’t guarantee the outcomes in the stock market in the way you can in a bank deposit. Do many Papua New Guineans buy shares? As a proportion of the adult working population, no. But it runs to thousands of people: 10,000 or 20,000 do have shares. However, all PNG members of major superannuation funds have exposure to the stock market through their superannuation fund.
EXPLAINER Shares represent a single unit of ownership in a company, and can go up or down in price depending on economic conditions and a company’s performance. Companies issue shares to raise capital. Shares are also called securities.
scared of nothing, or are they in their corner and fighting for their territory?
What is the significance of the bull market and the bear market? The figure of a charging bull is a powerful visual representation of aggressive forward movement, whereas a bear tends to get up on its back feet to fight its corner and defend itself. They are representative of the sentiment in the market, what the preponderance of investors are thinking. Are they charging forward,
How has COVID-19 affected the market? There has been a negative effect for everyone in PNG. In a recessed economy, like the one we have had because of the pandemic, companies have found it tough. Therefore their share prices are lower. Investors have also found themselves in a very tough situation, so they have preserved their cash rather than invested. That has reduced their spending on shares. The PNG market has recovered somewhat, but not fully. Generally, there is demand for shares at lower prices.
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BIG PUSH FOR MORE SMEs BY CARMEL PILOTTI |PHOTOGRAPH: GODFREEMAN KAPTIGAU
Six months into his five-year term, the Chairman of the Small and Medium Enterprises Corporation of Papua New Guinea (SME Corp), John Pora, is pushing ahead with the government body’s ambitious plans to develop the SME sector. If the PNG government is to reach its goal of bringing 500,000 SMEs into existence by 2030, Pora says SME Corp must have the capacity to activate around 240 new entities every day across PNG’s 22 provinces. As the arm of the PNG government that deals with all things SME, Pora says SME Corp has formulated three strategies to build a bridge between the government and the SME sector. SME Corp launched its strategy document, The Road to Fifty, in September. Referring to the 50th anniversary of PNG’s independence, which will occur in 2025, the strategy is based on three principles: integration, communication and people, processes and performance. Among various projects to help meet the 500,000 target, SME Corp is launching provincial business incubation centres in West New Britain (construction is expected to commence by the end of the year) and upgrading a textile centre in Port Moresby. The corporation also has plans to move from a policy-driven body to one of implementation, by enabling direct public access to its resources and services. “These are exciting times which require an organisational cultural shift. I think, as a country, we’re ready for it,” Pora says. Pora says the speed at which PNG has transitioned has created 60 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
These are exciting times. SME Corp is moving from a policy-driven body to one of implementation. JOHN PORA, CHAIRMAN OF SME CORP
a vast gap between the formal and informal economies. “The question always is, how we can bring our people forward into the future? We’ve got so much raw resources and land, and we don’t have the belief that we can do something with it.” Pora is keen to change this. He brings to his role a colourful background, from being brought up by his grandparents in a village setting for a portion of his childhood to experience in his
family’s successful businesses. “I come representing my family, who have been in the public service for the past 57 years,” he says. Pora is a director of various entities in the SME sector, has worked across 14 provinces and 10 countries, and has 20 years’ experience in the field of e-commerce. He appears suited to help PNG achieve its 500,000 goal.
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AT WORK WITH FLIGHT ATTENDANT IRENE TOBUDI BY ZANA ENGLISH | PHOTOGRAPHS: ZANA ENGLISH & SUPPLIED BY AIR NIUGINI
Irene Tobudi is an Air Niugini stalwart. She joined the national carrier as a fledgling flight attendant 27 years ago and now works in a supervisory capacity on the airline’s big birds, the Boeing 767 and 737 aircrafts. Her official position in the flight attendant hierarchy is as a ‘cabin crew check and trainer’. It is an air industry-certified position that includes supervising flight attendants.
Irene Tobudi on … I love my work because I get to meet a lot of people from different places and backgrounds … it’s truly amazing. I travel to places like Australia (Cairns and Brisbane), Hong Kong and Singapore and explore their culture during layovers. I also get to travel to most of the provinces in our beautiful country. It may seem like an easy job, however we (flight attendants) go through a lot of training, such as first aid, aviation security, health and safety, to name a few. In my role as check and trainer on the Boeing fleet, I help deliver the best training possible to our juniors so that we can perform to our best and uphold the company’s reputation. My job also involves maintaining training, flight and duty records. A check and trainer also provides feedback to managerial staff on cabin crew operational, training and performance matters. Generally, check and trainers ensure a high standard of competency and regulatory compliance. Air Niugini is one of the leading airlines in the Pacific region. The 62 PNG NOW OCTOBER 2021
airline is safety oriented in the air and, more lately, with COVID-19 protocols. Papua New Guinea is one of the world’s toughest places to fly a plane. There are short runways, mountains and bad weather conditions from time to time. That’s created a kind of resilience that’s crept into the DNA of Air Niugini. The pandemic has drastically changed the operation of the airline over the past year, with reduced flights and fewer passengers travelling. We (flight attendants) must comply with the COVID-19 protocols set out by the airline and by each country we fly to. It might take some time before international borders are open for leisure travel again.
We go through a lot of training, such as first aid, aviation security, health and safety.
WHY STAY ANYWHERE ELSE? Here you will find Papua New Guinea’s most luxurious suites that have housed royalty, world leaders and celebrities. Offering the most modern, state-of-the-art Health & Fitness Centre in the country, in addition to the first-class spa complex and best fine dining restaurant. There is simply nothing like Airways, one of the world’s most awarded hotels.
Jacksons Parade, Port Moresby Tel +675 324 5200 +675 7373 2600 firstname.lastname@example.org www.airways.com.pg