11 Jul 2008

Bougainville resource company lays out financial constraints

4:52 pm on 11 July 2008

The man heading the Bogenvil Resource Development Corporation or BRDC, Robert Atsir, says it's currently not possible for the autonomous Papua New Guinea province to fully fund the company.

The BRDC aims to foster development in sectors such as mining, farming and fishing.

Mr Atsir says the 70 percent stake in the BRDC held by Canadian company, Invincible Resources, will eventually be sold down, with the hope that Bougainvilleans will take majority control.

One report from a public meeting yesterday in Buka says Bougainville MPs will be asked to end the arrangement with Invincible, but Mr Atsir says the BRDC cannot do its work without foreign help.

"It's not possible because we do not have the money, but we have made a good headstart with 30 percent with BRDC and that's a reflection, an indication of the genuineness of those that we are talking with, that they are very much interested in seeing that in the not too distant future BRDC will be Bougainville owned, but the majority ownership and the capital can only come about if we have foreign direct investment coming to Bougainville now."

Robert Atsir