Papua New Guinea's Chamber of Mines and Petroleum has welcomed the application for a special mining lease for the Frieda River project in the Sepik region.
The lodging of a SML is a key condition and needed to be made by the 30th June.
The Chamber said the Frieda River Project represented the next generation of mining operations in PNG and had the potential to make a strong contribution to the national economy.
Executive director, Greg Anderson, said the project had achieved a significant milestone and while there was much work still to do. The efforts of the joint venture partners need to be applauded.
He said before going ahead the investors will want an improved metals price outlook and strong support from the PNG government, including through ensuring legal and regulatory certainty.