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« Is Rev Malthus’s theory relevant to PNG? | Main | Security remains an issue for LNG project »

23 August 2011

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Thanks, Vijay, for this excellent article. The lngwatchpng blogspot is also very informative.

It is so common for these big mining companies to feel they are "God's gift" to any country. But there are so often so many negative consequences that flow on from the development of the mines that it makes one wonder whether it was all worth it.

I hope PNG people, such as Stanley Mamu, who runs the blogspot, will be able to bring about some improvement in the way the mining companies view the local people. I feel it is a racist thing.

Last year I visited the Newcrest Cadia Valley gold mine near Orange NSW. I was impressed by the way Newcrest had developed good relations with the people of Orange.

They hold annual tours of the mine so the local people can see exactly what is going on at the mine site. They have done various things to help the people of Orange.

ExxonMobil should be encouraged to do the same. Here is a very rich company working in an area where there are probably many people who have had little "contact with the outside world".

They may be poor from a money point of view but have actually been "rich" from the point of view of having had the resources to provide a livelihood for their families.

If a mining company is allowed to just come in and take away these "riches" e.g. their good land where they grow their food, their beautiful wildlife, which is a source of income from eco-tourism, etc then there is something wrong happening!

The large mining company should be doing all it can to understand these people and to build up good relations with them. They should not have to call in the police to settle the problems.

They should have a good team of anthropologists out there learning all about the local people and working out ways that the company can help these people. There has to be "give and take".

There has to be some "humility" from the mining giant. They are dealing with an ancient race of Huli people and they need to show them some respect and care.

"Money isn't everything!"

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