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Leightons wins major PNG gas HQ contract

BUILDING powerhouse Leighton Contractors has scored a $200 million deal to build a gas company's new head office in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.

Through Leighton PNG, the company will put 360 to work, with all but 72 coming from the area.

The team will build a headquarters for coal-seam-gas firm Esso Highlands.

Leighton's deal comes amidst challenging times in Australian-PNG relations, after the island nation's Prime Minister Peter O'Neill banned Australian economist Ross Garnaut from the country.

It forced Mr Garnaut to quit as chairman of PNG's top company - the Ok Tedi Mine - which is mostly governed by a trust that distributes earnings to the community after it was given control by BHP Billiton.



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