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PICTURED: Officers from OTML Community Relations conducting meetings in CMCA villages (Supplied Image).

By Jim John

Ok Tedi Mining Limited (OTML) is now looking into Extension Review Project in all the Community Mine Continuation Agreement (CMCA) regions of Western Province.

The CMCA agreement extension review project 2024-2025 was officially launched on February 17th and commenced engagement meetings with CMCA villages on February 19th, 2024.

The CMCA Extension Review Project will be conducted from 2024 to 2025 with an aim to obtain consent from all the 158 mine impacted villages to extend mine operations from 2026 to 2033.

This project will review the entire CMCA agreement between OTML and the eight CMCA regions and mine villages with a particular emphasis on the total benefits packages.

These eight CMCA regions of Western Province are Tutuwe, Waitri, Nupmo, Middle Fly, Suki Fly Gogo, Dudi, Manawete, Kiwaba including the mine villages.

OTML Manager Community Relations and Sustainability, Jeffrey Tom explained on the importance of review project with a focus on aligning community initiatives with the company’s new vision.

“OTML operates under a Social Licence which is the CMCA that has been enacted by parliament as part of the 11th Supplemental Agreement. The CMCA extension is commonly known as a Mine Life Extension (MLE) agreement and the review is crucial to ensure the community is well informed before consenting to an extension of the agreement period for another eight years.” Mr. Tom said.

He added that the consent given by the communities, gives OTML the Social License to Operate (SLTO) and help secure the interest of the communities and the country that depends on the mine.

He further said it is in the best interest of the impacted communities and beneficiaries that is derived from Ok Tedi, to have the mine secured so Ok Tedi will continue to operate. This is why the CMCA Extension Review Project is important.

The review process will include village meetings, regional meetings and working group meetings.

Village meetings will be conducted in all 158 CMCA and Mine villages, while the regional meetings will be conducted at regional centres and will involve nominated village representatives and other key stakeholders.

The working group meetings will be between the OTML management, other key stakeholders and regional delegates elected from the village meetings, which also include regional women and youth presidents.

All the village meetings are facilitated by Independent Facilitators, and the meeting process is observed by three (3) highly esteemed Papua New Guinean Independent observers.

Officers from OTML Community Relations and Sustainability Department and Ok Tedi Development Foundation (OTDF) will provide support to the Independent Facilitators and observers.

During the CMCA extension review period, relevant State Agencies and stakeholders who have an interest in OTML operations will participate at different stages of the meeting.

The CMCA agreement was established in 2001 with the signing of the first agreement, which was subsequently enacted by the PNG parliament through the 9th Supplemental Agreement.

Ok Tedi Mine is a 100% PNG owned company with the State of PNG through the Kumul Minerals Holding Limited owning 67%, while the remaining 33% is owned by three Western Province entities: The Fly River Provincial Government (MROT2) 12%, CMCA communities (MRCMCA) 12% and Mine villages (MRSM) 9%.

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