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PORT MORESBY, PNG (The National, Aug. 7) -- Prime Minister Sir Michael Somare has pledged to review the mining industry to ensure tangible benefits flow to the people, while making a public apology for poor delivery of government services.

He told several thousand people attending the signing ceremony for the Hidden Valley gold project he wants to see landowners get up to 60-70% of royalties and mining benefits.

He said there had been a breakdown in general government services over the years and his early ideals of building a great country had not eventuated because there has been too much politics.

"I’m sorry, things did not work out as planned," he said, as members of the public, including some children, gathered close to the grandstand for a good view of the Prime Minister.

Sir Michael later told The National that before he stepped down as Prime Minister, he would carry out a complete review of the mining industry to ensure project agreements ensured there were strong benefits for the people.

Details of this plan will be announced in his message for celebration of the country’s 30th independence anniversary.

Monday, August 8, 2005

The National:

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