PNG Prime Minister Marape urges all Wafi-Golpu stakeholders to work together and move project forward

Papua New Guinea  Prime Minister James Marape, has urged all stakeholders in the Wafi-Golpu Project to work together to move the project forward.

Prime Minister Marape said he would like all stakeholders to work together to agree to a way forward for tailings disposal, and for the negotiations to move forward to the next stage until an agreement was reached for construction to begin.

The Prime Minister made the call after a presentation of baseline studies by the developer of the Wafi-Golpu Project, supporting Deep Sea Tailings Placement (DSTP), at a workshop in Port Moresby, yesterday.

Prime Minister Marape said he had heard the call of landowners in the mine impacted areas through their leaders. 

He said he had also heard the concerns of the Governor for Morobe, Ginson Saonu, to ensure all processes as per the Laws of Papua New Guinea, were followed to the letter.

The Prime Minister said he understood Governor Saonu’s concerns for the people of Morobe. 

He is not against the mine going forward; he wants to ensure that the people get a fair share of the benefits, with minimal to no visible impacts on the surrounding environment. 

“However, in the course of discussions of the best tailings disposal method for the project, time is running ahead and time lost can never be gained again,” Prime Minister Marape said.

“Time lost is opportunity wasted, and so it is important that we make a decision as soon as possible.”

“Conversation on issues surrounding the waste disposal options has been going on in the public space for so long, (more than four years) and the people and country are missing out on gains that could have been had.”

The Prime Minister said when a decision was reached on the method of disposal for mine tailings, conditions, either it be in monetary of other means, must be set to cover for any other environmental impact issues that could arise. 

He said every stakeholder, including the Government, must be prepared to bear the cost.

Mr Marape said he was prepared to make tough decisions at the highest level should the negotiations fail to move forward at the earliest.


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