PNG Court rejects Barrick Niugini’s application

Papua New Guinea  COURT has rejected an application by Barrick Niugini Ltd, the operator of the Porgera gold mine, for an order to stop State authorities from interfering in its business operation.
Deputy Chief Justice Ambeng Kandakasi in the National Court declined to hear the application because he had already ordered both parties last Friday during an application by Barrick to review the State’s refusal to extend its special mining lease, to come up with an agreement on the care and maintenance of the mine site.
He had said then he would only hear any further applications once both parties had provided the court an agreement on an environment safety plan regarding the care and maintenance of the mine site.
The company’s lawyer Derek Wood of Ashurst Lawyers, informed the court yesterday that a statement released by the managing director of the PNG Mineral Resource Authority Jerry Garry was deemed “prejudicing the matter pending in court”.
Garry’s statement alleged that Barrick on June 3 had tried to export 23 gold bars worth K46 million along with K70,000 worth of silver.
The company on June 6 denied the claim.
Wood claimed that the statement had attracted public opinion and asked the court to stop the State and
its authorities from interfering in the company’s business.

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