PNG's Ok Tedi Mine’s processing business unit optimistic

 THE processing business unit at Ok Tedi Mining Ltd (OTML) is determined to finish the year on a strong note following the successful completion of the final and major mill shutdown.

The major shutdown which was conducted in September saw more than 350 employees, contractors and service providers involved.

Deputy general manager processing Isaac Kwetok said the focus for the business unit now was to ensure the revised plan of 65,000 tonnes of copper was delivered by the end of this year.

“We intend to keep the mills running till the end of the year and to exceed the production target so we can pay our dividends and keep this great company operating efficiently,” he said.

“This is our biggest mill shutdown for this year and it consisted of a number of different activities.

“One of these activities was the total plant shutdown in which the two mills were stopped, and inspections were conducted on them before their liners were replaced.

“The other major activity was the total plant outage in which the power supply to the plant was suspended to allow both the Tabubil power services and our electrical teams to conduct statutory inspections and also work on the transformers and other electrical equipment which cannot be done when power is on or when the mills are operating.” A key component of the successful shutdown was the incorporation of a Coronavirus (Covid-19) management plan which kept all the workers safe from Covid-19.

“With cases of the Covid-19 Delta variant in Tabubil and Kiunga, we had to stringently implement the Covid-19 management plan,” he said.

“This meant all our workers had to be tested before the shutdown commenced. We also made sure hand sanitisers and masks were made available to everyone and ensured social distancing was observed during meetings.”

“Overall, it was a very good shutdown, in terms of planning right through to execution.”

The National / Pacific Mining Watch 

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