8 Feb 2013

Phosphate mining will bring economic benefits: Moriori leader

7:35 pm on 8 February 2013

Chatham Islanders say they're looking forward to the economic benefits phosphate mining would bring to the island.

The Chathams Rise between the South Island and the Chatham Islands has been identified as a possible site for phosphate mining on the seafloor.

In September last year the Prime Minister and two other ministers went to Rekohu (Chatham Islands) to consult with Moriori and Ngati Mutunga leaders about their treaty settlements and phosphate mining.

Moriori Hokotehi Trust general manager Maui Solomon says there's a lot to be gained from the venture that will directly benefit his community.

He says the Chatham Islands Rock Phosphate Company has been busy surveying the Chathams Rise.

Mr Solomon says if the mining goes ahead, there'll be a substantial economic boost for the island.

The Government has already committed to improving the island's infrastructure including its wharves and installing fast speed broadband.