Work on a revised memorandum of agreement for the project is underway but various landowner groups, supported by Madang governor James Gau, want the national government to provide the funding before signing on, according to The National.
Out of the promised money from the national government, K20 million is reportedly for seed capital to start business ventures while K10 million is to upgrade the Raicoast road.
Issues over the MOA have been ongoing for years.
In 2008, Highlands Pacific managing director John Gooding told PNGIndustryNews.net there was a perception parties outside Highlands and Chinese project operator MCC Ramu had not fulfilled their commitment in the agreement, which was a big source of frustration.
The fully built $US1.5 billion Ramu mine could start producing first nickel and cobalt this year, providing there are no other court delays.
Lawyers representing some of the residents of the Rai Coast have delayed mine commissioning for at least 18 months through legal action against the deep-sea tailings aspect of the project.
The Ramu wet nickel laterite mine is expected to produce 31,150 tonnes of nickel and 3300t of cobalt per annum in a high-grade concentrate over a 20-year mine life.
The resources could also potentially support mining for a further 15-20 years.
MCC owns 85% of the Ramu project, Highlands owns 8.56% while PNG's Mineral Resources Ramu owns 3.94% and landowner company Mineral Resources Madang owns the remaining 2.5%.