PNG's Timber Barons: #1 - The WTK Cluster


  • Number of Logging Concessions (1993-2021): 19
  • Total Log Exports (2019-2021): 1.3 million cubic meters
  • Market share of all log exports (2019-2021): 14%

WTK Cluster ( from "The New Timber Baron Report") 

More than 30 companies registered in Papua New Guinea appeared to be linked to each other and to have links, through common directors and shareholders, to the Sarawak (Malaysian) conglomerate WTK group.

This cluster includes at least nine logging companies, seven of which exported tropical round logs from PNG during 2019-2021.

According to the groups website, WTK's global operations span logging, oil palm, real estate, property development, manufacturing, hotels, and shipping.

The main company in the group appears to be WTK Holdings Berhad, in which Dato Sri' Patrick Haw Yeong is the Managing Director, and his father, Datuk Kie Yik Wong is a substantial shareholder. A large shareholding in WTK Holdings Behad is held by WTK Realty Sdn Bhd, which appears to be a family-held company. Datuk kie Yik Wong, is also the chairman of the Sarawak Timber Association. Another key figure in this cluster is Tiong Sii Huang, who is a member of Sarawak's State Legislative Assembly.

Between 2019 - 2021, companies that are part of this cluster exported 1.3 million cubic meters of round logs from 12 concessions in Madang, West Sepik (Sandaun), New Ireland, East New Britain, Milne Bay, and Central province. Of this, nearly 350,000 cubic meters were exported from a single concession - Amanab Blocks 1-4 in Sandaun Province. The WTK cluster's large footprint in PNG also includes seven other concessions that did not operate in the last three years.

Non-logging companies linked to this cluster appear to be focused on construction, shipping, oil palm and supermarkets. 

In May 2021, a Malaysian newspaper reported that WTK Holdings Berhad stated it had no logging operation in PNG. Act Now! and Jubilee Australia wrote to WTK Holdings Berhad to seek clarification for this prior to the publication of these findings, but did not receive a response by the time of publication. 

You can find out more about all ten Timber Barons - PNG's largest log exporting groups - in the report The New Timber Barons