Barrick calls for 'partnership approach' to secure Porgera lease extension

FILE PHOTO: The logo of sponsor Barrick Gold Corporation is seen as visitors arrive at the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) annual convention in Toronto, Ontario, Canada March 4, 2019. REUTERS/Chris Helgren/File Photo

(Reuters) - Canadian miner Barrick Gold Corp ABX.TO said on Thursday it conveyed the need for a "partnership approach" for the future of the Porgera gold mine in Papua New Guinea, as the Pacific nation wants more benefits from the mine, for which Barrick is seeking a lease extension.

Papua New Guinea's recently elected Prime Minister James Marape's view that the nation should receive a "better share of the benefits" generated by the development of its mineral resource is in line with Barrick's commitment, the Canadian miner said in a statement

“I am confident that we shall be able to reach a broad agreement on the terms of the lease extension,” said Chief Executive Officer Mark Bristow, who has visited the country three times since he joined Barrick earlier this year, after meeting the prime minister for a second time.

Papua New Guinea's government is looking into an application by Barrick Niugini Ltd, a joint venture between Barrick and China's Zijin Mining Group 601899.SS, for a 20-year extension on Porgera's special mining lease that expires this month, the company said.

In June Marape said major reforms to earn more taxes from the Papua New Guinea's natural resources sector would not take effect for years but the country's treasurer put Total SA TOTF.PA, Exxon Mobil Corp XOM.N, Newcrest Mining NCM.AX and their partners on notice that it wants to get more benefits from their gas and mining projects.

Reporting by Sathvik N and Philip George in Bengaluru; editing by Gopakumar Warrier