Nautilus must explain first: Dion

National, Normal


EAST New Britain Governor Leo Dion says the impacts of the proposed seabed mining by Nautilus Minerals must be thoroughly explained to the provincial government so that the people are well informed.
“Experience has shown that major development projects today failed to deliver due to lack of consultation, monitoring and implementation.
“The people are also ill-informed.
“All stakeholders must be mindful that the coastal people depends on marine resources to sustain their livelihood,” he told the Government, Nautilus Minerals company officials, Mineral Resources Authority executives and Department of Mineral Policy and Geohazard Management at the opening of the two-day Solwara 1 project consultative forum in the Vunapope conference centre in Kokopo yesterday.
He acknowledged the Somare-Temu Government for addressing the issues and that the consultative meeting demonstrated the Government’s commitment to improve the long-term interest of the people.
Mr Dion said: “Stakeholders need to be mindful of the people’s perception. I am glad this consultation forum is addressing the outstanding issues.
“Technically, the environment will be protected and machines will be used to explore the seabed. But experience from other provinces need to be considered seriously.”
He said the provincial executive council had approved the work of Nautilus Minerals in providing assurance to the public to be open and frank in finding out more information about the proposed seabed mining.
A series of community awareness and consultation meetings, focusing on districts and local level
governments had also been held.