Thursday May 22, 2014 – Speech by Mr Paul Nerau, OBE, Chairman of the Board of the IPBC…
Welcome to this important and historic ceremony at which we will witness the signing of the Charter of Good Governance by the Honorable Minister, myself, the leaders of the Boards of the various State Owned Enterprises, and also committing ourselves to the Code of Governance.
The IPBC was formed under the IPBC Act of 2002 and has been evolving ever since, most notably with the IPBC (Amendment) Act of 2012. Today is yet another important milestone in the evolution of the IPBC.
The Charter and the corresponding Code of Governance had its genesis at a training workshop that took place at the request of the Minister on October 8 and 9, 2013 that involved the Directors of the IPBC.
The Charter of Good Governance – and the Code – set out to define the IPBC, the State Owned Enterprises and the elements of Corporate Governance to which we fully subscribe.
We do so because – essentially – we are the custodians acting on behalf of the people of Papua New Guinea. We have a duty and obligation not only to do our best, but also to achieve best possible results.
By best possible results I mean those qualities that you can see displayed in our vision and mission statements.
These are values that include leadership and excellence, best practice, integrity and passion, professionalism, good corporate governance, efficiency, reliability and last but not least profitability.
It is essential that State Owned Enterprises are profitable. We need to return a dividend to shareholders not only because profitability is a key indicator of success in any business, but also because profitability allows us to reinvest and grow our business which in turn drives the economy.
The State chooses to own and operate enterprises because such assets are essential services – look at them – transport, water, telecommunications, energy, insurance – we need these services to run our wonderful country and we need these services to run wonderfully well…and to be run with pride and excellence.
Our State Owned Enterprises are at the very foundation of our economy. We rely on them. They are meant to be our national assets and not liabilities. It is therefore essential that the SOEs aspire to the very highest principals of good governance and that they in fact provide a perfect role model for other businesses to follow.
This is the importance of the Charter being signed today. It is a marriage – a union – between the IPBC, the SOEs and the Ministry – and it is aimed at the common good.
Today marks the day that the IPBC and the State Owned Enterprises enter in to a binding agreement so that the entities are managed “in such a manner as to persistently and unambiguously seek to maximise the public value that it is obligated to create.”
In closing I would also like to acknowledge the contribution of the Managing Director of the IPBC, Mr Wasantha Kumarasiri and his team; as well as Deloittes PNG in producing the Charter and associated Code of Governance. I believe we will soon see a short presentation from Mr Des Blake of Deloittes who will provide more background detail on the Charter and Code.
I also wish to acknowledge the support and confidence of the Honorable Mr Ben Micah, Minister for Public Enterprises and State Investments.
Minister, on behalf of the IPBC and State Owned Enterprises I am proud to present the Charter of Good Governance for your signing.
On behalf of my Board and the management of IPBC, and the Boards of our State Owned Enterprises we are making our commitment to one another and to the people of Papua New Guinea to act in accordance with the Charter of Good Governance and the corresponding Code of Governance within this Great Haus and before the eyes of God.
Thank you and God Bless Papua New Guinea.
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