Ok Tedi generated K56 billion since 1985

The Ok Tedi Mine has generated K56 billion in revenue between 1985 and 2016.

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.

Chan thanked former Western Governor, Ati Wobiro, and his people for supporting the operation of the mine during the past difficult times and commended landowner leaders for negotiating and bringing the MOA review process to conclusion.

He told them the Ok Tedi project is a matured project where the state has fulfilled most of its MOA commitments, and the revised MOA only had a few.

“The mature status of this project again presents itself by way of the success that all stakeholders have established very successful and diverse business operations which cover mine operations, civil and engineering, tourism/hospitality, logistics, real estate, aviation, fisheries, agriculture and primary industry.

“I congratulate and salute you for providing the leadership to responsibly apply the benefits derived from the mine to your business investments that would sustain you after mine closure,” he said.

Chan also said the O’Neill-Dion Government recently embarked on the most radical shift in its dealings with mining project stakeholders by granting 33 percent direct equity in the Ok Tedi mine to the people of Western Province.

“We are confident that you have proven yourself as a people who are responsible and will make a success of what the government have gifted you with, and your government stands ready to assist and partner with you to realise and grow the value of your direct equity in the Ok Tedi project.

“Many of you here today have committed to this project since its commencement and I want to assure you all that Ok Tedi is not just a project delivering copper for export – it is in fact a national icon that we should take pride in, that we should protect, and that we must support. It is indeed more than a mine,” he said.

The MOA signing was attended by Governor of Western Province, Roy Biyama, Provincial Administrator Gull Gorgom and Peter Graham – CEO Ok Tedi Mining Ltd, among others.

Cedric Patjole