PNG Mining Sector Employment in PNG Low, Tax Contribution Raise Concerns

Employment in PNG mining sector faces scrutiny after data presented by the Prime Minister revealed troubling trends: low local employment representation and insufficient tax contribution. These findings sparked urgent calls for reforms to ensure the industry benefits the nation and its citizens.

The data, spanning from 2018 to 2023, illustrates a concerning decline in employment opportunities within the sector, with a particularly sharp drop in 2023. More importantly, the figures expose a significant underrepresentation of Papua New Guineans in the workforce, raising questions about the industry’s commitment to empowering local talent.

According to the Prime Minister’s figures disclosed during parliamentary sessions, the employment in PNG numbers within the Mining, Quarry, and Petroleum Sector are as follows:

  • 2018: 12,657 employees
  • 2019: 15,897 employees
  • 2020: 14,519 employees
  • 2021: 12,591 employees
  • 2022: 13,418 employees
  • 2023: 9,268 employees

Compounding the concerns, the mining sector’s contribution to internal tax revenue falls short of expectations. This limited fiscal contribution, largely due to the low number of Papua New Guinean employees, highlights the unrealized potential for generating sustainable economic benefits for the nation.

The employment figures presented for Papua New Guinea highlight both areas of progress and areas for improvement. While certain sectors, such as agriculture and manufacturing, have shown growth in workforce size over the years, other sectors like mining exhibit concerning trends of declining employment opportunities.

The disparity in representation of Papua New Guineans in certain industries underscores the need for policies and initiatives aimed at promoting greater indigenous participation in the workforce. These figures serve as a valuable resource for policymakers, businesses, and stakeholders in identifying areas for targeted interventions to enhance employment opportunities and economic prosperity for all citizens of Papua New Guinea.

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