PNG's Porgera Mine Opening in April

 STATE negotiation team (SNT) chairman Dairi Vele says the multi-billion Porgera gold mine in Enga is expected to reopen next month after being closed for almost two years.

Vele told The National that it would however take several months to ramp up to steady production.

He said that operator, Barrick Niugini Ltd (BNL), was in charge of funding the cost of restarting the mine with the state expected to repay BNL its share of the restart cost.

Under the new Porgera deal, the state has a 51 per cent stake – 36 per cent to Kumul Mineral Holdings Ltd and 15 per cent to the Enga government and landowners.

The state is expected to gain 53 per cent of any profit made from the new Porgera mine deal.

“The mine has been shut for nearly two years,” Vele told The National.

“We need to reopen the mine, get staff moving throughout the mine, make sure the equipment are all okay, replace and upgrade what needs to be replaced and start mining again and getting the ore through the processors.

“Barrick is in charge of all of these.

“The State is doing all we can on our side to allow Barrick to do what they need to do. They (BNL) are funding the restart, State will repay Barrick its share of the restart costs.”

The State has recently signed the Porgera Project Continuation Agreement (PPCA) with landowners through Mineral Resources Enga.

The National / Pacific Mining Watch

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