The Chief Executive at Newmont Nusa Tenggara, Martiono Hadianto, said that on Wednesday evening (03/09) a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed between the USA- based mining giant and the Indonesian government after an 8-month dispute over the country’s ban on exports of mineral ore (implemented on 12 January 2014). The mining company can now resume copper concentrate exports next week. Earlier this week it had been announced that both sides would come to an agreement.
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The Indonesian government and Newmont Nusa Tenggara (NNT) have reportedly agreed on the content of a renegotiation package after an 8-month dispute over the mineral ore export ban. NNT, subsidiary of the USA-based Newmont Mining Corporation, will be allowed to resume copper concentrate exports up to 200,000 tons (with a value of about USD $400 million) until the end of 2014. Last week, NNT already announced it would not seek international arbitration over this matter.
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Newmont Nusa Tenggara (NNT), subsidiary of US-based mining company Newmont Mining Corp, has received a permit from the Indonesian government to export 350,000 metric tons of copper concentrate in the next three years. Three weeks ago it became known that both parties agreed on the content of a renegotiation package after an eight-month dispute over Indonesia’s mineral ore export ban, implemented on 12 January 2014 (part of the New Mining Law). In the remainder of 2014, the company is expected to export 160,000 tons.
Reportedly, Newmont Nusa Tenggara (NNT) will not seek international arbitration at the Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) in Washington (USA). Previously, the miner threatened to file for arbitration in an attempt to force the Indonesian government to cancel the recently introduced ban on exports of unprocessed minerals as well as to abort higher export duties. NNT is a subsidiary of Newmont Mining Corporation that operates the Batu Hijau mine, an open pit copper and gold mine in Sumbawa.
Subsidiary of US-based natural resources company Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc, Freeport Indonesia, decided to build its copper smelter in Gresik (East Java) as infrastructure around this regency makes it easier to transport its mining products for export purposes. The other location that Freeport was considering was in Papua, near its mining site the Grasberg mine, the world’s largest gold mine and third-largest copper mine. However, infrastructure in Papua (one of the poorest regions in Indonesia) is still underdeveloped.
Whether Newmont Nusa Tenggara (NNT) will file for international arbitration over a six-month old export dispute with the Indonesian government remains unclear. Although many analysts would like to see international arbitration over this case, such a step would imply several risks for the copper miner (which is for 56 percent owned by US-based Newmont Mining Corporation and Japan’s Nusa Tenggara Mining Corporation). The source of the dispute is Indonesia’s recently-introduced ban on exports of ore concentrates.
Indonesian Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources Jero Wacik regrets to see Newmont Nusa Tenggara, one of Indonesia largest copper miners, file for international arbitration due to Indonesia’s export ban stipulated by Law 4/2009 on Mineral and Coal Mining (Minerba). This new law includes the ban on exports of ore concentrates from Southeast Asia’s largest economy. Instead, Indonesian miners are required to process the minerals domestically first. The ban was implemented on 12 January 2014.
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