6 Sep 2011

Call to review Vanuatu mining act

1:32 pm on 6 September 2011

The director of the Vanuatu Cultural Center, Marcelino Ambong, has urged the government to review the mining act because it doesn't benefit customary landowners.

He has called on the government to follow the example of Papua New Guinea and start a review of the mining act.

Mr Ambong says according to the constitution, land belongs to customary owners but the mining act does not even require their consent before exploration or prospecting can take place on their land.

He said the government should review the act to avoid problems, should mining start in Vanuatu.

Last year, drilling took place on the island of Pentecost to measure the quantity of gold for an eventual mining and New Caledonia's Vale nickel company is interested in mining limestone on Santo.