13 May 2014

Cook Islands hosting deep sea minerals meeting

1:37 pm on 13 May 2014

Lucrative minerals on the Pacific ocean floor are on the agenda today as a meeting in the Cook Islands of more than 60 stakeholders from around the globe.

Even though commercial mining is not expected to start until after 2020, the Cook Islands already has legislation and an authority in place.

Opposition politicians in the Cooks Islands have expressed concern over environmental impacts as well as the need to consult those in the outer islands.

The three-day meeting begins today and government officials will discuss how to handle the revenue from future harvesting.

The Cook Islands Finance Minister, Mark Brown, says lessons need to be learnt from the past.

"The challenge will be in making sure that those resources and that wealth is managed in a way that encourages good sustainable growth for the countries and is not squandered in ways that we've seen in other countries in the past, in the Pacific."

The Cook Islands Finance Minister, Mark Brown.