The Cassowary Hotel received its first rental return of 4.8 Million Kina from the Coral Sea Hotels group on the 02nd November.

This payment marks a significant occasion for the proud owners of the hotel, the Community Mine Continuation Agreement (CMCA) people and Women’s Associations through their Trust Investments.

Ok Tedi Development Foundation Executive Manager Corporate Services, Mr Renagi Koiro said the hotel was built at a cost of 35 million kina and was the last approved investment made by the 8 Trust Boards of the CMCA in a chain of investments, comprising ships, to aircraft and real estate with an investment portfolio value in excess of 110 million Kina.

Mr Koiro said: “The purpose of the investments was to increase the 110 million Kina of capital value from a combination of capital and lease payments earned to help sustain the livelihoods of the CMCA people beyond mine closure”

He added that the investment in the Cassowary Hotel has had its fair share of construction challenges but the end result was a magnificent building that has since been professionally managed by Coral Sea Hotels and this payment is a blessing, a first since the Cassowary opened in 2018.

Mr Koiro said: “This payment should be a sign to the investors that a solid return on investment will come, but this is a 20-year lease agreement and it will take a while to deliver the full commercial terms agreed”.

Ok Tedi Development Foundation (OTDF) partnered with Steamships Limited through Coral Sea Hotels and Pacific Palms Property to bring the Cassowary Hotel to the township of Kiunga, Western Province.

“We’ve had a presence in Kiunga and the Western Province for decades through our port services and shipping businesses”, commented Rupert Bray, the Managing Director of Steamships. “The opportunity for our Property and Hotels businesses to partner with the CMCA to build and manage some much-needed hospitality infrastructure for the community is an exciting one that reinforces our commitment to the region”.

The Cassowary Hotel in Kiunga opened its doors in one of the fastest-growing regions in Papua New Guinea and is the Seventh Coral Sea branded hotel in the country, offering 43 rooms including six extended stay apartments.

The Hotel design offers luxuries for business travellers and local companies not previously seen in Kiunga, while providing an international standard of comfort.

The Hotel Manageress Mrs Patricia Ginuni, when presenting the cheque, commented, “We are very excited to partner with the CMCA communities and look forward to providing all our guests the trademark Coral Sea Service when they stay at the Cassowary”.  She added that the group also looks forward to the Pnyang project commencing soon as it will bring a lot of business to the hotel and Kiunga in general.

The Trust Investment portfolio is an integral component of the CMCA benefits package, structured to ensure benefits flow to future generations beyond Ok Tedi mine closure.  Investments are made in accordance with a Trust Deed, are highly visible in Western Province and have guaranteed returns, with the best possible asset managers.

OTDF manages these Trust Investment funds through a low risk strategy that ensures the protection of capital and drives stable returns for future growth.  In 2019 the portfolio continued investing funds earned from the respective investment assets into high yielding inscribed stocks, with a cumulative return in excess of PGK50 million kina after 8 years.