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Newcrest: K133m spent on PNG villages

NEWCREST Mining Ltd has spent A$61 million (K133.45 million) on Lihir communities from 2011-12, general manager operations Karl Spaleck said. 
Speaking at the mining seminar in Port Moresby yesterday, Spaleck said the figure was an improvement from the A$43 million (K94 million) spent in 2010-11. 
While presenting on Lihir gold operations, Spaleck stressed that the miner had been contributing to PNG economy. 
He said last year, the national government received K218 million in royalty payments, while the New Ireland provincial government and Nimamar local-level government got K33 million.
Spaleck said Lihir received a direct payment of K91 million.
He said Newcrest was committed to pursue local employment and training and to make sure the impacted community benefited from the mining operations.
Spaleck said the Lihir agreement review included the integrated benefit package, which covered the compensation and relocation agreement (CRA) memorandum of agreement (MoA).
The deal aimed to provide for health and education services, infrastructure and substantial business opportunities.
“Mine closure plan is part of the Lihir agreements review,” Spaleck said. 
Spaleck said schools within the Newcrest mine district at Lihir were given school buildings.
“Namatanai, Mongop and Utu High Shools had been completed while the Lihir and Tanir High school building projects would follow suit.
All these projects cost about K18 million under the Lihir Gold Ltd tax credit scheme.
The Namatanai High School power project has been commissioned as part of the MoU with the New Ireland provincial government.
Newcrest on Wednesday confirmed the appointment of two executives to the company’s board.
 Peter Hay has been appointed board chairman to replace Don Mercer, who is retiring from the board end of this month.
Sandeep  Biswas was named executive director and chief operating officer,  to succeed Greg Robinson as chief executive middle of next year.
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