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Project Case Study

Managing the human impact of an expanding mining sector in Papua New Guinea

Developing an Involuntary Resettlement Policy

Unregulated and undercompensated resettlement associated with mining in Papua New Guinea has been significant for a country where 85% of people rely on subsistence agriculture, and only 13% of people live in urban centres.

This has particularly affected remote indigenous communities living near potential mine sites, causing emotional distress and loss of livelihood.

One reason for this has been the lack of defined rules and regulations around land acquisition, which has led to problems with the way new opportunities for mineral extraction are managed, sometimes leaving communities significantly worse off as their traditional land holdings are seized and exploited without their consultation.

Project info

Involuntary Resettlement Policy


  • 2013


  • World Bank

To address this continuing problem, we deployed an expert to Port Moresby in May 2013, on behalf of the World Bank, to work with the Department of Mineral Policy and Geo-hazards Management over six months in planning and coordinating the development of a national Involuntary Resettlement Policy. Our support included a gap analysis, extensive in-country consultations with over 200 people of all levels, and policy drafting.

The resultant Involuntary Resettlement Policy applies to all phases of mineral development and other extractive industries, from exploration to development. It ensures that communities are legally protected from exploitation, successfully reducing the risk of social conflict and unrest for both the local people and the government, and encouraging mining investment from the developed world.

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