Operations at Ramu Nickel JV in Papua New Guinea set to restart

3 July 2016 (Last Updated July 3rd, 2016 18:30)

Australia's Highlands Pacific has reported that operations at the Ramu Nickel joint venture (JV) at Basamuk near Madang in Papua New Guinea (PNG) are set to resume after the completion of rectification work.

Australia's Highlands Pacific has reported that operations at the Ramu Nickel joint venture (JV) at Basamuk near Madang in Papua New Guinea (PNG) are set to resume after the completion of rectification work.

Metallurgical Corporation of China (MCC) operates and manages the JV.

In April, operations at the Basamuk refinery were halted after a high-pressure steam pipeline failed, killing one Chinese worker and injuring two PNG national employees.

When the incident occurred, employees were working around high-pressure vessels at the nickel processing plant.

"Operations were halted after a high-pressure steam pipeline failed, killing one worker and injuring two."

An external contractor was on-site to carry out a thorough investigation of the incident, including a review of systems integrity and safety procedures.

The Mineral Resources Authority (MRA) Mines Inspectorate has also conducted a formal inquiry following, with remedial work was also carried out at the plant.

Last month, the MRA conducted further site verification inspections and has issued a conditional permission to restart two of the plant's three high-pressure acid leach (HPAL) trains.

Conditions relate to areas of training, supervision, as well as general operating procedures that surrounded the operation of HPAL Trains 1 and 2.

Further repairs are planned to be undertaken on HPAL Train 3, where the failure took place.

Highlands Pacific said that mining and processing are now being resumed at the Kurumbukari mine and the Basamuk refinery.

The Ramu Nickel JV is 8.56% owned by Highlands Pacific.