12 Apr 2013

Promise to engage with community before re-opening divisive Bougainville mine

10:27 am on 12 April 2013

The chairman of Bougainville Copper Ltd, Peter Taylor, is promising the company will engage with all the key stakeholders before it goes ahead with re-opening the Panguna mine.

The huge copper and gold mine was at the centre of the Bougainville Civil War and has lain idle for 24 years but Mr Taylor told shareholders earlier this week that the company was ready to prepare for a re-opening.

He says it would take six years before production could start and cost five billion U.S. dollars but there is growing support for such a move from within Bougainville.

And Mr Taylor says the company will be taking a different approach this time round.

"We opened the mine in the era when Papua New Guinea was not an independent country so clearly things are very different now and we need to engage and we will engage with the key stakeholders, being the Bougainville Government, the national Government, the landowners and the populace generally in Bougainville."