Ethical Performance
inside intelligence for responsible business


mining group offers support to local businesses

September 2005

Newmont, the mining group previously accused of causing environmental damage, is helping an Indonesian fishery company to build a processing plant and an ice factory providing cheaper and better access to ice for keeping fish fresh before it is sold. The project is one of several in the agriculture, fishing, microfinance and small business sectors that Newmont is carrying out in communities affected by its Minahasa mine closure.

The group says in its report, Now and Beyond 2004, that these initiatives are part of its policy to encourage the development of replacement businesses in areas where unemployment follows the closure of its operations.

Newmont reports that it has consulted interested parties over suspected contamination after the disposal of mine tailings in Buyat Bay, Indonesia, but has not given their views. However, it is carrying out a follow-up to the report, which will give it the opportunity to publish stakeholder comment. Initial studies by the World Health Organization and the Indonesian environment ministry failed to show high amounts of arsenic and mercury near the disposal site, but the government has disputed the findings and prosecutors have filed criminal charges against a senior Newmont executive.

Reporting on its investments in communities in the areas where it operates, Newmont reveals that last year it contributed $27million (£15m) worldwide in cash and $5.6m in kind. In Australia it is to raise $736,500 towards a new aircraft for the Royal Flying Doctor Service.

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