Nautilus Minerals goes hard on PNG gov't over Solwara 1 dispute

Nautilus Minerals goes hard on PNG gov't over Solwara 1 disputeCanadian seafloor miner Nautilus Minerals (TSX:NUS) has taken a harder line in a long-dragged dispute with the Papua New Guinea government, deciding to revoke the state’s right to a 30% in the Solwara 1 gold, copper and silver project, underwater project.

The company, the first yet not the only one with projects to mine the ocean floor, said in a brief statement local authorities had failed to pay their share of development costs for the mine, despite an October ruling.

The Toronto-based firm also said PNG has not paid a $118 million compensation it was supposed to handle by October 23rd last year, so it will now seek undisclosed damages.

Despite the hard-core decision, Nautilus said it continues to seek “an amicable resolution of the dispute” with PNG and it will hold an investor conference call and audio/webcast on Tuesday, Feb. 18 at 10.00 a.m. Eastern Standard Time.

Solwara, located in the minerals-rich Manus basin, in the Bismarck Sea, was originally slated to begin production by the end of 2013. If completed, it would become the first project commercial deep-sea mining in the world.

 

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