PNG Government pledges mining law overhaul

THE Papua New Guinea government plans to change laws and policies regulating the country’s mining sector.
PNG Government pledges mining law overhaul PNG Government pledges mining law overhaul PNG Government pledges mining law overhaul PNG Government pledges mining law overhaul PNG Government pledges mining law overhaul

Mining Minister Byron Chan told an industry seminar that proposed changes to the Mining Act would be passed in parliament next year.

Chan said PNG was not exempt from the adverse global financial climate and the government was well aware of the issues affecting the mining industry.

Delegates heard the main challenges facing the government included mineral ownership, greater national participation; increased and better distribution of mine benefits; tangible infrastructure developments; and relocation and resettlement planning.

Mine closure and rehabilitation, sustainability of communities impacted by mining projects and improved monitoring and regulating by the state are also key challenges for the PNG government.

Chan said the government had taken steps to rectify past mistakes and asked sector stakeholders to contribute toward efforts to address the issues.

"PNG's potential in the mining sector is demonstrated by existence of some world-class projects," he told The National.

"Many of these mines such as Ok Tedi, Porgera, Lihir, Hidden Valley, Tolukuma, Sinivit, Simberi and Ramu have their own unique challenges.

"Apart from the operating mines, we have a number of exploration projects in advanced stages.

"The government is committed to ensure these projects are brought on stream to be the next pipeline of mining projects over the next five years.

"With the renewed interest in the country's mining activities, PNG has the potential to become a well-developed nation if only we could properly and effectively harness these projects and maximise benefits.

"This calls for better management of issues affecting industry."

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