27 Aug 2008

Governor of PNG's Madang province criticises response to Ramu issues

8:23 pm on 27 August 2008

The Governor of Papua New Guinea's Madang province has criticised the response by both national and provincial governments as well as the developer of the Ramu nickel project to ongoing issues around the mine.

This follows an attack by 100 armed local landowners on three Chinese workers employed by China's state-owned Metallurgical Construction Company or MCC at the Ramu nickel mine.

Madang's Governor Sir Arnold Amet says issues about the Ramu operation have been brewing among employees and local landowners for some time now.

He believes the attack was in reaction to a delay in the review of the project's Memorandum of Agreement.

"In that Memorandum is a whole range of the socio-economic development benefit streams that are at the core of this ongoing agitation, that the people aren't satisfied that those commitments are benig honoured by both the governments and the developer. So I think that both the governments and the developers, MCC, could have tended to these matters with greater dilligence much earlier."

Sir Arnold Amet