Solomons Gold Mine To Remained Closed, May Be Sold

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Gold Ridge has been out of commission since flooding four months ago

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, August 11, 2014) – Solomon Islands troubled Gold Ridge gold mine is to stay closed at least until next year, and could be sold.

The mine has been shut for more than four months after it was flooded during the storms in early April and the owner, Australian company, St Barbara, flew all its expatriate staff out of the country.

Those workers were excluded by Solomons' authorities from returning until about two months ago.

The company has now laid off all operational staff and indicated other workers could also go.

The special secretary to the Prime Minister, Dr Phillip Tagini, says work to stabilise the mine's tailings' dam will take at least until the end of the year.

"I think we still think that Gold Ridge Mine is an important contributor to the economy. Everybody all the stakeholders the government the land owners, Gold Ridge mine are fully aware of the need to have an understanding about the future of the mine, to have proposal on accepted agreement which serves the best interest of all the stake holders," says Dr Tagini.

St Barbara says it is considering its options and it could sell the mine.

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