23 Mar 2010

Solomon Islands' PM welcomes relaunch of Gold Ridge gold mine

8:10 am on 23 March 2010

The Solomon Islands' Prime Minister says today's relaunch of the Gold Ridge gold mine is a positive signal that the country has recovered from the years of ethnic tension.

The gold mine, which had been a vital part of the Solomons' economy, was closed by the crisis.

Dr Derek Sikua says its re-opening also indicates a new business environment that's open to investment.

The executive chair of the Australian company, Allied Gold Limited, who owns Gold Ridge, Mark Caruso, agrees, saying it's an important step for the country.

"It may just be seen as a ceremony they're the beginning of a new era of mining in the Solomon Islands. It also offer a significant diplomatic message to the world [that] politically the country is ready to brace investment."

Mark Caruso of the Australian company, Allied Gold Limited.