Prime Minister James Marape has responded to statements made by Barrick Niugini Limited.
He said the government will await the National Court’s decision before taking appropriate steps to re-open the mine.
In a media statement released this afternoon, Mr. Marape states the expiry of the Special Mining Lease and the refusal to extend the SML is in line with PNG laws and in the interest of the nation.
Marape stating while the issue is before the court, the state had offered BNL Equity and possible operatorship and to discuss without prejudice biases but BNL has refused this option unless the Special Mining Lease was approved.
He believes the country could benefit from a total of 640 million US Dollars of net earning if the mine was operated by the state. Marape said the money will greatly benefit PNG’s Economy.