Namah skeptic about Pogera Mine Deal


June 15, 2021 - 361 views

Opposition Leader Belden Namah, in a media statement has expressed skepticism over the new Pogera Mine Deal between Prime Minister James Marape and Barrick Nuigini Limited.

Namah said the 51/49 percent equity split may take years as Barrick will want to recoup its financial losses before PNG gets a ‘sniff at any equity revenue’ for years.

His reasoning was that Barrick has its back against the wall with extensive and expensive court cases, both here and overseas, after Barrick took the government’s action to court, and the maintenance cost at US$400 million, and reopening at a further K1 billion among other expenses associated with the closure.

Namah said Marape’s government’s action to close the operating profitable gold mine, over environmental damages and other legacy issues, and award the SML to the State owned Kumul Mining Limited, and then re-negotiating a deal with BNL that BNL had earlier offered on the table in February 2020, will leave PNG in a far worse state that before the Mine’s closure.

BNL President and Chief Executive Officer, Mark Bristow had stated recently that the cost of restarting the Porgera mine is around US$300 million (K1.052 billion), with the care and maintenance of the mine alone had cost BNL US$120 million (K421 million) and an additional US$180 million (K625mil) was needed to restart mining operations at Porgera.

Under the new deal, Barrick is being asked to finance the land owner’s equity and Kumul Holding’s 36 percent.

Namah described the essence of the Marape Porgera deal as being ‘no deal’ at all.

Picture by Papua New Guinea Today – PNG Facts

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