It has been revealed that the Australian Solomons Gold Limited will need a massive USD$100 Million dollars to re-start mining operations.

Director of Australian Solomon Gold Limited, the mother company of Gold Ridge Mining Limited which is based in Australia, John Bovard revealed this to the media yesterday.

Mr Bovard said it has taken longer than expected and one of the reasons is to get the local people to agree to a resettlement plan.

He said some of the banks that are financing the project are insisting that operations would only start when the people have been relocated.

Mr Bovard said the project should have started operations a long time ago, and denied allegations that the delay was due to financial constraint.

He said the company would need USD$4 Million dollars to relocate villagers in the area.

Mr Bovard said the project is being sponsored by an international group of banks based in Washington DC in the US.

He said the group has been to the country recently to talk with the Solomon Islands government.

Meanwhile, Mr Bovard said there were no cyanide leakage at the Gold Ridge Mine site, nor has the presence of cyanide in the area are above recommended health levels.

He said workers who were taken to the National Referral Hospital last week for possible cyanide poisoning and exposure have been tested, but so far there is no indication they had cyanide poisoning.

Mr Bovard said the workers had complained of feeling ill and whilst they showed no symptoms of cyanide poisoning, the company took them to the hospital for testing.

He said he can prove that cyanide levels in the tailings dam is well below cyanide levels that are contained in cigarettes.

Mr Bovard said it would take another two weeks for the blood samples of those workers which were sent to a laboratory in Australia to come back.

He said the company will still investigate the matter very thoroughly.

Mr Bovard said they have heard stories that some former employees are promoting bad publicity against the company.

Copyright @ 2009. SIBC Online News. All Rights Reserved.