BAT PNG funds MSME training

British American Tobacco PNG (BATPNG) has committed K200, 000 to upskill 100 Papua New Guineans to drive the growth of the Micro, Small & Medium Enterprise (MSME) sector.

The funding will be channelled through a practical results-based training conducted by Human Development Institute (HDI) suited to the PNG context.    

On May 15th BAT PNG and HDI signed an agreement in Port Moresby to formlly begin the training program which focuses on basic financial management and personal viability. 

BATPNG General Manager Stephanus Duvenage says they are keen to support initiatives that will add value to communities and the countries they operate in as part of our global Environment Social and Governance (ESG) programme. He said BAT PNG’s ESG focuses on Sustainable Agriculture and Empowerment. 

He said the agreement with HDI focused on bringing about Empowerment through training, preparing, encouraging and increasing the number of ordinary people in PNG who can venture into running their own businesses and to become job creators and employers rather than dependents.  

“This support BAT is offering will go into the training of 100 PNG citizens focusing on basic financial management and personal viability.  The first batch of 30 citizens will be selected using a set of criteria with basic minimum requirements that one must meet.  Details of this can be obtained from HDI.  The selection is open to any PNG citizen as long you meet the basic minimum requirements and you are prepared to put in the time and effort to improve your life using business techniques of personal viability.

“HDI will be rolling this training out to other centers of PNG soon after this first round of training.  For those outside of Port Moresby who wish to participate, I encourage you to enquire with HDI on how you can get this training going in your respective centres,” said Duvenage.

He added the commitment was for the sole purpose of supporting MSME growth as directed by the governments national policy.

“It is also important to note that the current situation has meant changing priorities for both the Government and private sector. However we at BAT feel that the Government’s policy on growing MSMEs needs to be supported in order to improve the livelihood of our people or as we say in PNG, “wok mas go yet.” Stephanus said.

HDI will partner with Women’s Micro Bank (WMB) for students to access funding where the amount will depend on their PVBS training level.  

HDI Founder Samuel Tam thanked BATPNG for their support saying they intend to support over 100 students in the 5 year partnership. 

The training will be conducted at the HDI 6 Mile Office.

Interest can be directed to Aileen Kaiulo on 3112714 or 3230066 and Email:

Picture (supplied): British American Tobacco PNG

Cedric Patjole