Bauxite export may start soon
World Link, which entered Rennell Island only towards the end of last year, is in the process of making its first bauxite shipment overseas.
Mining authorities confirmed the company has been issued its export permit, which means it can now export its products.
“Yes, the Ministry of Mines and Energy has granted World Link its export permit,” acting director of Mines, Thomas Toba told the Sunday Star.
Source also said the company was also in the process of acquiring its consignment permit, which would allow them to export bauxite soon.
The granting of World Link’s export permit comes amidst claims fraud was involved in the approval.
Toba declined to comment on such claims.
World Link management have not answered their phones when contacted for comments.
The company operates on a privately registered land owned by a particular tribe.
However, Rennell chief Jonathan Tohuika claimed he owned a parcel on that registered land.
The bauxite mining on Rennell has sparked controversy throughout the whole of last year.
Asia Pacific Investment Development, which has been doing mining on the island, has had its business licence cancelled last year by the province.
The High Court has since issued an order prohibiting APID from doing further operations on Rennell until matters surrounding the dispute are resolved in a court trial.
While APID was not in good terms with the Renbel Provincial Executive, World Link has the backing of Premier Colin Tesuatai.
Tesuatai previously explained World Link followed all the right procedures in obtaining its business licence to operate in his province.
By BRADFORD THEONOMI