Chamber eager for mine to reopen

Business

THE Government and Barrick Gold should fast track the re-commencement of the Porgera gold mine in Enga to relieve local businesses, the Porgera chamber of commerce and industry says.
President Nickson Pakea said this while welcoming the visit by Barrick Gold chief executive officer and president Mark Bristow with senior company executives as part of their quarterly review visits to Barrick operated mines.
According to a statement from Barrick Niugini Ltd, the Porgera mine is presently under care and maintenance while negotiations for the re-commencement of mining continues, in line with the terms of the framework agreement signed between Barrick and the Government in April.
“Closure of the Porgera mine has affected many businesses in the Highlands to Lae, Mamose and abroad,” Pakea said.
“It has been 18 months (last April to Oct) since the closure of the mine.
“We have bank loans to settle.
“The local contractors were badly affected.
“Our business liabilities including bank loans now exceed K2 billion.”

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