Tag Archives: MCC

Aggrieved landowners say they are missing out on Ramu mine benefits

Post Courier | April 6, 2018

The RAMU Nickel Project has life span of over 35 years, according to project developer Ramu NiCo Limited.
And with exploration continuing, the project life’s span could even increase, vice president of Ramu NiCo Management (MCC) Limited, Wang Baowen said on Wednesday when addressing aggrieved landowners at Mindre village.
Mr Wang was accompanied Mineral Resources Authority cheif executive officer Philip Samar, MRA senior officers and a legal officer from the Investment Promotion Authority.
Mr Wang was addressing aggrieved landowners who petitioned the Government and the developer over what they claimed were missed business opportunities, compensation payments, royalties and environmental issues.
Certain community leaders alleged at the gathering that minerals were being shipped out of the country in ship loads after ship loads and they were suspicious that the mine life of the project was coming to its end soon.
However, Ramu NiCo Community affairs manager Albert Tobe said such stories that are being speculated were not true.
Mr Wang said that initially the mine’s life-span was about 25 years, however, with recent exploration and discoveries of ore up at the Kurumbukari plateau, the mine life may extend to over 30 years.
He told landowners of Basamuk that the developer is also a local company with interests of landowners, State and the province at heart.
“Am very clear regarding your concerns on business opportunities,” Mr Wang said.
Mr Wang said the company had to face many difficult challenges initially from the start until it went into production.
He said it is also a big challenge for Chinese employees working in PNG particularly with the language, cultural here, and the challenge of leaving behind their families to come to PNG just to operate the project.
However, that was a big commitment they have made for the development of the economy and its people.
Mr Wang said it was only last year that the company achieved full production capacity.
He also told the landowners at Mindre that all compensation claims which they were seeking must come within an agreement.
“With regards to business opportunities, we want to give business to landowners and we provide what we can, but there are other businesses that require strict management requirement” Mr Wang said.
He said the company is willing to discuss further with the landowners through Ramu NiCo community affairs department business development section to deliver their requirements in business opportunities.

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Landowners have no rights over old Basamuk camp says MRA

Landowners claim Highlands Pacific promised them a school and sports ground on land where MCC is now building an accommodation block and refuelling station… 

Post Courier | April 6, 2018

Mineral Resources Authority managing director, Philip Samar clarified that Ramu NiCo Management (MCC) Limited still holds the lease for mining purpose to portion four which was the old camp at Basamuk in Rai Coast distict, Madang Province.
Mr Samar was responding to a petition by a group who claimed to be Lands Title Commission (LTC) declared landowners of Basamuk who petitioned the State and the developer over business opportunities, compensation, environment damages and other issues.
The vice president of Ramu NiCo (MCC), Wang Baowen also attended the meeting.
In one of their petitions, the group claimed that a portion of land which was previously used as the accommodation camp during the construction phase is currently being developed without their consent.
This was after Ramu NiCo had moved its workers accommodation to a new location adjacent to Yaganon river.
However, MCC community affairs general manager, Martin Paining clarified to the people that, that particular portion concerned is still within lease for mining purpose (LMP), and there was no specific agreement signed previously that after the construction, the land would return to the traditional landowners.
One of the landowners argued that initially the then previous developer, Highlands Pacific Limited (HPL) had planned to build a school and a sporting field on that portion of land.
However, locals have witnessed new accommodation quarters being built and also a fuel refueling station being erected within that portion of land.
Mr Samar in supporting Mr Paining pointed out that Ramu NiCo had the license to operate and so long as they have the lease they can do anything on the land.
He said under the LMP which had been transferred from HPL to MCC, the current developer the license is still valid and the developer can do any development of that portion of land.
“There was no agreement which states that after the construction phase, the land goes back to the traditional landowners.”

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A Norwegian, a Papua New Guinean and an American walk into a Bar

Basamuk refinery, Papua New Guinea

Ellen Moore | EARTHblog | March 7, 2018

Do you like riddles? Then try this one on for size: what does your wallet have in common with Papua New Guinea?

Give up? OK, I’ll give you a hint: it’s got something to do with that little plastic rectangle with all the numbers on it.

That’s right, your debit card. You see, the world’s largest banks and investment firms are using the money they control — YOUR money — to finance mining projects that dump hazardous waste straight into oceans, rivers, and lakes. Papua New Guinea is ground zero for this problem.

Despite fierce local opposition and a legal battle that suspended operations for 19 months, the Ramu nickel and cobalt mine in Papua New Guinea is currently dumping around 14,000 tonnes of toxic mine waste into Basamuk Bay every day. Activities from the open-pit mine have polluted the water and destroyed fishing grounds. The indigenous Kurumbukari people were forcibly displaced from their ancestral homeland to make way for the mine, separating them from to their livelihoods, traditional way of life, and spiritual practice. The PNG National Fisheries Authority criticized the project, calling it “unsustainable socially, economically and environmentally.”

It’s Dirty. It’s Unnecessary. And it’s Wrong.

Ramu isn’t the only mine in PNG polluting critical water sources, and PNG isn’t the only country with this problem. Mining companies dump 220 million tonnes of hazardous waste directly into the world’s waters every year: more waste than the United States puts into its landfills.

That’s why today we are excited to announce the Ditch Ocean Dumping campaign. Earthworks, along with our coalition partners, are stepping up to stop this harmful practice — but we can’t do it without your help.

The banks couldn’t finance these projects without our money. Don’t let your money go to Waste! By propping up irresponsible mining companies, financial institutions like Citigroup, Credit Suisse, Bank of America, and JP Morgan are putting the health of our oceans and planet at risk.

Take Action now! Tell Citi it’s time to #DitchTheDumpers.

Help us stop this outdated practice from making a comeback: in addition to Papua New Guinea, new projects that would dump mine waste into the ocean are a being developed in Norway, and the industry has its sights set on Chile.

Everyone has their own connection to water. It’s personal. For many indigenous communities, water is the heart of their cultural heritage and spiritual practice. Healthy oceans and clean rivers and lakes are also critical to reducing the impacts of climate change. So go ahead: find your personal water connection. Then jump in and help us Ditch Ocean Dumping!

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Ramu NiCo shuts down equipment for serious maintenance work

Poor workmanship and shoody construction has hampered the Ramu nickel mine

The National aka The Loggers Times | January 23, 2018

Maintenance work on high-pressure acid leaching (HPAL) of train one at Ramu Nico’s Basamuk Refinery is going on. Work started on Jan 11 and is scheduled to end on Friday.

Ramu Nico company said the maintenance shutdown was to thoroughly maintain the system, eliminate potential system deficits and test the integrity of the equipment within HPAL.

More than 500 workers, both Chinese and PNG national employees of Ramu NiCo and external vendors, are involved in shutdown maintenance activities.

Safety officers from Ramu NiCo’s health safety and environment department are monitoring the maintenance work.

The maintenance shutdown would enable stable and prolonged production output for next year.

This is now consistent for Ramu NiCo autoclaves, enabling proactive forecasting of production rates and effective planning of major equipment turnarounds.

Ramu NiCo Basamuk HPAL process has three trains which are a vital component of the nickel/cobalt project in Madang.
The three HPAL circuits are key components to the safe production at Basamuk.

Shutdown maintenance is carried out periodically with each high-pressure acid leaching circuit enjoying a 15-day annual overall, staggered throughout the year.

The planned overhaul focused on autoclave scale removal, including integrity checks of equipment and statutory requirements in relation to pressure vessels and valves.

The maintenance and repair of each auxiliary system is carried out according to planned schedules, including acid-producing plants and boilers.

The Basamuk high-pressure acid leaching processing department applies operational principles of compliance in safety and operation at high efficiency, including undertaking of stable and proper maintenance at Basamuk processing site.

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Ramu mine faces huge deficit

Post Courier | April 04, 2017

THE Ramu nickel-cobalt project in Madang is facing a huge deficit balance accounting to more than K100 million despite achieving 100 per cent design capacity beginning this year.

The deficits are due to the declining commodity prices and serious April 2016 fatality at Basamuk refinery forcing the project to shut down indefinitely at the time incurring huge production losses.

Vice President of Ramu NiCo, Zhao Deqian announced this during the monthly KBK elders’ project update meeting in KBK on Saturday. Mr Zhao was accompanied by Executive Deputy General Manager KBK Mine Li Bentao and Deputy General Manager Commercial KBK Mine Liu Tianhua.

“We have achieved milestone production reaching 109 percent design capacity but at the time when nickel price is at US$13,000/ton low and production loss during Basamuk April 2016 incident costing hundreds of millions of Kina deficit.

“We are still recovering from production loss but capable to sustain ourselves given the current production stability,” Mr Zhao said.

He said the project operation cost can sustain itself from little money made including salary for employees and the deliverance of Project MOA commitments.

“We are now emphasising on safety issues and taking strict control on safety standards on site so we do not repeat the same Basamuk April 2016 incident. We cannot afford another production loss,” Mr Zhao said.

He said the company has identified some priority areas to cut down costs including the reduction of Chinese employees and increase of national employees through localisation programs.

“Our aim now is to make profit, deliver benefits to landowners and ensure high safety standards,” he said.

The Vice President acknowledges the landowners for their support and asked for their continuous support for the Project until it clears off the deficit balance.

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Government to pay Ramu mine landholders

After nine years of operation, the stakeholders have not seen the benefits

Tax holidays mean the Chinese are still digging for free at the Ramu mine

Why is the government having to pay out K20 million when it receives no revenues from the Chinese owned Ramu mine? Isn’t the point of these large-scale resource extraction projects that they contribute to government revenues – not add another drain on taxpayers money? 

Ramu Nickel/Cobalt project LOs to get K10m in Business Development Grants

Post Courier | February 13, 2017

THE impacted landowners of the Ramu Nickel/Cobalt project in Madang have welcomed the announcement by Government that it will pay the balance of K10 million owed to them.

This is in Business Development Grants (BDG).

‘The assurance was given by Mining Minister Byron Chan after Usino/Bundi MP Anton Yagama had raised the issue on the floor of parliament.

Chairman of Kurumbukari landowners association Tobby Bare, in welcoming the announcement said the initial commitment of K20 million had been made by the former Somare Government.

However, this commitment had been honoured by the O’Neill Government, with the first K10 million being paid.

Mr Bare said the landowners were grateful to the O’Neill Government and had urged that the balance be paid before the 2017 General Elections.

He said given the downturn in the PNG economy, the landowners had great difficulties in securing business opportunities and added that the funds would provide some relief.

“While other landowner companies in other project area have been able to progress, we have been struggling,” Mr Bare said.

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MCC to build $4bn Sepik industrial park

Chinese owned MCC love to describe the Ramu mine as world class...

MCC have struggled to build a simple pipeline in Madang, can they really build an industrial park in the Sepik?

Chinese investors set to build $4bn industrial park in Papua New Guinea jungle

Global Construction Review | 3 February 2017

China has agreed to build a vast industrial complex in a jungle region of Papua New Guinea (PNG) with factories processing tropical foods and minerals.

A memorandum of understanding was signed in December between a group of investors from the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen and the government of PNG, a small South Pacific country that shares the island of New Guinea with Indonesia, just north of Australia.

Patrick Pruaitch, the country’s treasury minister, told Reuters that the plan was to build two processing and manufacturing plants in West Sepik province, a dense jungle region in the north of the country about 30km from the Indonesian border.

One will process timber, fish, cassava and tropical spices and the other will handle steel, cement and other industrial products.

The projects are to be developed in phases at a final cost of $3.8bn. The government of PNG said it hoped construction would start in 2017, but the plans were “very long term”.

The main contractor for the parks is expected to be the Metallurgical Corporation of China, which was responsible for the main Chinese investment in the country to date, a $2bn nickel mine completed in 2012.

The PNG projects fall under the heading of China’s “One Belt, One Road” strategy, which is being extended from the classical Silk Road to Europe to include the 16th-century “Silver Road” to America, developed by the Spanish navigator Andres de Urdaneta.

According to Reuters, investors from the Chinese coastal province of Fujian are close to signing a deal to build a huge industrial centre that will turn PNG’s lumber into furniture.

The nominal GDP of PNG in 2016 was around $19bn, so the size of these Chinese investments are enormous relative to the country’s economy.

Other Chinese developments on the horizon in West Sepik are a copper and gold mine – mining company PanAust has completed a feasibility study and launched an application to begin work – and a dam to provide hydro power for these new sites and provide a disposal site for the mine’s tailings.

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