OTML commences awareness meetings with its stakeholders in preparation for the 2024 CMCA Review

By: PNG Business News October 11, 2023

The OTML Team and its stakeholders at the first day of the meetings on Saturday 7th October, 2023.

Ok Tedi Mining Ltd (OTML) conducted a 2-day meeting with its stakeholders over the weekend in a bid to commence awareness as a lead up to the upcoming Community and Mine Continuation Agreement (CMCA) Review planned to commence in early 2024.

The meetings hosted at the New Century Hotel in Kiunga was attended by more than 100 leaders and representatives from the Mine Villages, CMCA Communities, Fly River Provincial Government, State Agencies, Mineral Resources CMCA, Mineral Resources Star Mountain (MRSM), Mineral Resources Development Corporation (MRDC), Kumul Mineral Holdings Limited (KMHL) and the PNG Sustainable Development Program (PNGSDP).

OTML Manager, Community Relations and Sustainability, Jeffery Tom elaborated that the purpose of the meeting was to provide operational updates to the OTML’s stakeholders; communicate key information to mine associated communities in preparations for the CMCA Review that will commence in 2024; stakeholders responsible for managing community business and development interests updating their programs, performance and work plans; and to provide a forum for Mine Villages and CMCA Communities through their leaders to raise any issues of concerns and provide feedback to OTML and other stakeholders’ performance.

“We want to ensure all our stakeholders are informed of what OTML intends to do prior to the actual CMCA Review consultations commencing in 2024 that will lead to the eventual negotiations and signing of the revised CMCA at the end of 2025. The planned CMCA review in 2024 will continue to provide the affected communities Free, Prior Informed Consent which underpins the Social License to continue operating while meeting its obligation and corporate social responsibility,” Mr Tom said.

The CMCA Review Process is expected to be carried out in three phases. Phase 1 involves village meetings creates initial awareness, appointment of village leaders and communication of the information needed by the 158 mine impacted communities to make FPIC decision. Phase 2 involves meetings by community and CMCA leaders to draft position paper and Regional Strategic Plan that will be communicated to the villages by the respective community leaders. A total of 177 meetings are planned for these two phases.

Phase 3 will see the commencement of the working group meetings that include round table discussions and negotiations, drafting of CMCA compensation and benefits packages as well as the drafting of the CMCA Agreement. A total of 169 meetings are planned for this phase to conclude the discussion, development signing of the agreements and communication of the new agreement to the 158 CMCA villages.

OTML’s current Social License was signed in 2012/2013 for the Life of Mine (LOM) up to 2025. The extension bid is for the LOM to be extended to 2033, an additional eight years from 2026. The Mine Life Extension beyond 2033 has been approved in principle by the OTML Board last month but the proposed extension is only to 2033.

So far the Ok Tedi Project has conducted two CMCA negotiations and one CMCA review. The initial CMCA negotiations occurred in 2001 and the current one in 2015 while the review occurred in 2006/2007.

The OTML contingent in the 2-day meeting led by the General Manager, Social Performance and Sustainability Jesse Pile, and supported by CR Manager Jeffrey Tom, Environment Manager Erizo Kepe, Economics Program Manager Steve Hoap and Bige Operations Manager Naimen Kepan provided OTML operational and departmental updates to the stakeholders.

While providing the OTML operations update to the stakeholders, Mr Pile said OTML had restructured the company to align with its new vision, to deliver sustainable economic and social benefits to the people of Western Province and PNG.

He said, “We want to ensure the mine affected communities are able to develop and sustain a better quality of life and wellbeing long after mine closure by extending the life of mine to sustain the benefits in terms of employment, business, dividend, royalty and compensations payments.”

The stakeholders attending the meeting were excited with OTML’s New Vision of ‘We operate with excellence, maximising the value of our mineral resource in an environmentally responsible way, to deliver sustainable economic and social benefits to our communities and the people of PNG’.

“With this new Vision, we are excited about Ok Tedi’s future, as it provides the opportunity for business partners and stakeholders to collaborate with OTML to address the social and economic sustainability gap in the Western Province, particularly the mine associated communities,” he added.

The Ok Tedi Mine is 100% PNG owned with the State of PNG through the Kumul Minerals Ok Tedi Ltd owning 67% while three Western Province entities hold the remaining 33%.

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