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Wrong Richard Maru?

Hon. Richard Maru

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Background Information

Employment History

National Development Bank of PNG

Minister for Trade


Minister for Trade, Commerce and Industry

Papua New Guinea

Chief Executive Officer

NDB Bank


Minister for Trade and Industry and Member

Board Member

Dairy Industry SA

Web References (98 Total References)


PNG's Trade Minister, Richard Maru, accused Canberra of using his country as a "dumping ground" for its goods and said it wasn't in Australia's interests for the Melanesian countries to become self sufficient in anything.

Lae Port is shaping up to ... [cached]

Lae Port is shaping up to be the South Pacific's biggest industrial city says PNG's Trade Minister, Richard Maru.

High level participants from the Pacific ... [cached]

High level participants from the Pacific included the Honourable Fonotoe Nuafesili Pierre Lauofo, the Deputy Prime Minister of Samoa, and the Honourable Richard Maru, Minister of Trade, Commerce and Industry of Papua New Guinea (PNG).

PNG's Minister for Trade, Hon. Richard Maru emphasised the need for his country to move up the value chain and to capture more value addition domestically prior to the products being exported.
"The current Government is committed towards seeing value added to our raw products from the agriculture, forestry, fisheries and mining sectors in order for the country to generate sustainable revenue, and at the same time create employment opportunities for our people, particularly those in rural areas," Hon. Maru said.
"The Fisheries industry is losing significant value as most of its catch is processed offshore. Appropriate Aid for Trade could assist in developing productive capacity in this sector to process fisheries products in the Pacific before they are exported," said Hon. Maru.
PNG's Minister for Trade, Hon. Richard Maru; Director General of WTO, Pascal Lamy; Deputy Prime Minister of Samoa, Hon. Fonotoe Lauofo at the Pacific Breakfast event, held in the margins of the 4thGlobal Review of Aid for Trade, in Geneva

Papua New Guinea's trade Minister, ... [cached]

Papua New Guinea's trade Minister, Richard Maru, recently set a cat amongst the pigeons by saying that PNG was not interested in the regional trade negotiations known as PACER-Plus. Specifically, Minister Maru commented that "our feelings at the moment is that PACER Plus would be one sided in favour of Australia and New Zealand...We are frustrated with them.

This became a hot topic of discussions when PNG's trade minister Richard Maru announced at the inaugural Melanesian Spearhead Group's trade ministers meeting in Nadi last month that Port Moresby is reviewing its participation in the current PACER Plus negotiations between Pacific islands countries and their two bigger and wealthier neighbours-Australia and New Zealand. "At the moment as the new minister coming in, I am not convinced that PACER Plus is of any interest, or have any mutual benefits for PNG, and it is my intention to have a look at it again and take it back to my government to take another look," Maru told Fijian journalists who covered the one-day meeting.

On 7 August 2015, PNG's ... [cached]

On 7 August 2015, PNG's Minister for Trade, Commerce and Industry, Richard Maru, gathered at Government House for the signing of a Heads of Agreement that would make KLK an equity partner in the development of a 37,000 hectare oil palm project in East Sepik's Special agriculture Economic Zone (SEZ).

Minister Maru reportedly said that the National Executive Council (NEC) took the decision to enter into the agreement with KLK after the State could not agree to terms with Wilmar International to develop the project.
The SEZ is a government driven economic development plan, wherein the Independent Public Business Corporation (IPBC) holds the State's 30% shares in any joint venture investment in the Sepik Plains through Sepik Agro Industries Limited.
On the day that KLK, Maru and other government officials gathered in Port Moresby to sign the Heads of Agreement, it was reportedly found that the paperwork was not in order, twice. By the end of the day, the signing was put on hold for a later date.
Photo: KLK officials waiting to sign the Heads of Agreement with Minister Maru in the Government House in Port Moresby.
Sepik Agro Industries owned by Minister Maru
The exact reason why the signing of the Heads of Agreement was postponed remain undisclosed. CRR believes that the hick up may be related to the conflict of interest on part of Minister Maru, who was, until January, listed as the sole shareholder of the intermediate between IPBC and KLK, Sepik Agro Industries:
The share transfer refers to Minister Maru as the company Charirman, although he is not listed as a Director. It is not stated whether he continues in ths role.
Wilmar International declines to confirm or deny that Maru's conflict of interest led the company to abandon its involvement in the SEZ in 2014. A representative stated he regretted that Wilmar had to forego the opportunity to develop vast areas of underutilized grasslands and conserving some 8,000 hectares of lowland rainforest.
Ms. Lim Poh Poh, KLK representative, when questioned about KLK's involvement said the company was not aware of Mr Maru's personal involvement and has not yet assessed the suitability of the site for oil palm:
The invitation we received was made through PNG's Ministry for Trade, Commerce and Industry of which Mr Richard Maru is its current Minister.
We are not aware of any personal interest of Mr Maru in the proposed development, as the PNG Government had confirmed earlier that as at 10 April 2015, Sepik Agro Industries Limited is wholly-owned by an entity known as Independent Public Business Corporation, which in turn is wholly-owned by the PNG Government.
"Why is Trade Minister Richard Maru the sole shareholder in an oil palm company and a 'multi-billion dollar' project? PNGExposed.Blog May 19, 2014. "Major Oil Palm Project on Hold. EM TV News. 7 August 2015. "Sepik Plain Economic Zone. EM-TV Online. 26 January 2015. "Sustainability Policy Progress Report. December 2014 - June 2015. Kuala Lumpur Kepong Berhad. "Soil Survey and Land Evaluation of Urimo Livestock Station. East Sepik Province. Department of Agriculture and Livestock. 17 January 1992.

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