Ok Tedi Mine

MP dissatisfied with O’Neill’s response

During Parliament’s first sitting, Western Governor Taboi Awi Yoto asked for their share of the 2017 dividends from Ok Tedi Mine.

PM O’Neill responded by saying the Government is still holding onto the 33 percent share equity in Ok Tedi for the people of Western, including their dividends.

“As a Member of Parliament for the host district of the Ok Tedi Mine, I am not happy with that kind of response from a prime minister,” MP James Donald said.

Ok Tedi shares yet to be fully transferred: O’Neill

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill revealed this when asked by Governor for Western, Taboi Awi Yoto, over their share of the 2017 dividends from Ok Tedi Mine.

The Governor said since the announcement of the share transfer and subsequent dividend announcement since production resumed, they have yet to receive a toea.

Governor Yoto asked the Prime Minister yesterday in Parliament over the status of the shares and dividend payment.

​Western Province ministers visit Ok Tedi

Governor Taboi Awi Yoto, Minister for Correctional Services and Member for Middle Fly Roy Biyama, Member for North Fly James Donald and South Fly MP Seki Agisa visited the site on September 6 and 7.

“It was particularly pleasing to be able to host this important government delegation to visit Ok Tedi,” said Ok Tedi MD/CEO Peter Graham.

Ok Tedi generated K56 billion since 1985

This was revealed by Mining Minister Byron Chan during the signing of the revised Ok Tedi Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) on June 6th in Tabubil.

Chan said from this amount, K20 billion in benefits has been received through goods and services, compensation, training and education, tax credit scheme projects, royalties, levies and dividends.

The revenue generated comes off the back of the mine producing 12 million ounces of gold, 4.5 million tons of copper and 29 million ounces of silver within the same 30-year period.

​K7m project to help landowner villages

This has been made possible through a project initiated by the Ok Tedi Development Foundation (OTDF).

OTDF has engaged Israeli agro-business company, Innovative Agro Industries (IAI), to implement the project. The six villages involved are Atemkit, Finalbin, Bultem, Kavorabip, Migalsimbip and Wangbin.

OK Tedi optimistic in 2017

Speaking at the Australia-PNG Business Council Forum in Port Moresby, Executive Officer and Managing Director, Peter Graham, said despite returning after the production disruption, due to the El Nino drought, the mine performed well, generating K2.1 billion in a 10 month production run.

Graham said their optimism is based on the mine's mineral reserves, which underpins a strong base case.

Proposed law to ban river tailings

The proposal has been put forward by the Constitutional Law Reform Commission (CLRC) and awaiting government approval.

This follows the experience of the Ok Tedi Mine operations and the dumping of mine tailings which have polluted the Ok Tedi and Fly River systems.

International environmentalists say the damage will last for decades, if not centuries.

If passed by Government, the law will protect another of PNG major water systems, the Sepik River, from the proposed Frieda Mine project in West Sepik.

Landowners call on Govt to delay equity sharing

Speaking at a media conference in Port Moresby landowner spokesperson Nick Bunn said the 33% shares belongs to the people of Western and is nothing to do with OTML, OTDF or anybody else.

“Therefore, we would like to decide on the sharing of these 33% independently.”

Bunn said the 33% equity must be shared must be shared by the Western Provincial Government, the three District Development Authorities (DDA), Mine lease villages, CMCA and non-CMCA people.

Infrastructure network essential for citizens, states Ganasi

Although the province hosts the Ok Tedi mine, road network and infrastructure were in a terrible condition.

Speaking at the announcement of three impact projects which will be launched soon in Kiunga, South Fly MP Aide Ganasi said a province-wide infrastructure network is essential so that people can work their land and move their produce to the markets.

The three impact projects include the Ningerum-Ok Tedi River Bridge construction, Drimgas Fly River Bridge construction and the redevelopment of the Kiunga District Hospital.

OK Tedi mine project to recommence

He said even in the low-price environment of today, Ok Tedi will be profitable because of the measures that the management and the board has taken.

“While the shutdown was not ideal because of the drought, it also gave us an opportunity to review some of the cost structures of that business.”

O’Neill also thanked the management at Ok Tedi, for monitoring the situation.

Meanwhile Managing Director Peter Graham said this year will be a very challenging year to recover from the effects and costs of a prolonged suspension of operations, and weather remains a risk.