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Key Statistics


  • Ok Tedi Mining Limited (OTML) is a large-scale, cost-competitive, producer of copper concentrate in Papua New Guinea.
  • The operation is located on a world-class, copper-gold ore body at Mount Fubilan in the Star Mountains of the Western Province, close to the border of West Papua.
  • Initial development of the mine took nearly eight years and cost US$1,400 million. Production of gold ore began in 1984. Copper concentrate production began in 1987.
  • The company operates mining, milling and shipping facilities in the country's Western Province.
  • Its principal markets are Japan, Asia and Europe.
  • The mine is an open-cut operation with an average of 220,000 tonnes mined each day.
  • The processing plant treats an average of 80,000 tonnes per day.
  • In 2004, OTML exported 598,622 dry metric tonnes of copper concentrate. This contained 166,328 tonnes of copper, 15,272 kilograms of gold, and 35,217 kilograms of silver.
  • OTML directly employs nearly 2,000 people. More than 1,900 of these employees are PNG citizens, and more than a third of these are from the Western Province and local areas.
  • Export sales in 2004 were K211 billion* which represented 25.7 per cent of PNG's total exports. OTML is one of PNG's most important sources of foreign exchange. (*AUD$917 million based on an exchange rate of 2.29 at 24/10/05)
  • Since mining began, the mine has contributed an estimated K1.8 billion to the Western Province, with a further K900 million estimated to be spent in the province before mine closure in 2012.
  • An average of 80 million tonnes of tailings and overburden are discharged to the Ok Tedi each year.
  • The build up of mine sediment in the lower Ok Tedi has caused a rise in the river bed, flooding and sediment deposition on the flood plain, leading to the death of forest vegetation ("dieback"). To date, about 1,588 square kilometres of dieback or stressed vegetation has been observed. Up to 3,000 square kilometres of forest may ultimately be affected. These forests are expected to take many years to recover after mine closure, maybe 200 years or more.
  • To reduce sediment-associated dieback in the river system, OTML has installed a large cutter suction dredge at Bige on the lower Ok Tedi. Currently, approximately 15 million tonnes of sand is dredged from the river each year. Approximately 150 square kilometers of die-back recovery has been observed in the lower Ok Tedi, largely as a result of the dredging operations.
  • Ownership of OTML was restructured when BHP Billiton divested its shareholding of 52 per cent early in 2002. These shares were transferred into a new company, the PNG Sustainable Development Program Limited. The State of PNG has a shareholding of 30 per cent (2.5 per cent is held on behalf of mine area landowners, 2.5 per cent on behalf of the Western Province government and 10 per cent on behalf of the people of Western Province). Canadian public company, Inmet Mining Corporation holds 18 per cent.
  • Dividends from the Sustainable Development Program Company are distributed in the form of sustainable development projects to the people of the Western Province and the wider PNG nation under arrangements between shareholders allowing BHP Billiton's exit from the project. Two thirds of these dividends will be invested for future generations until after the mine closes.
  • Several hundred companies provide contract services to OTML. Seventy per cent of the contracting companies are wholly PNG-owned.
  • Under the current mine plan, the mine will close around the end of 2012.




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