Ok Tedi Mining Limited (OTML) shares the concern in relation to the recent positive COVID-19 cases identified in quarantine from its returning expatriate employees and contractors.
From the commencement of the pandemic in early 2020, OTML developed and implemented its COVID-19 Management Plan to ensure the safety, health and well-being of employees, families, contractors and host communities, whilst continuing to safely operate. This includes compliance with all protocols for re-entry to Australia.
The Company has successfully rotated personnel on FIFO rosters on dedicated charter planes without incident until the recent cases were identified in quarantine in Cairns, whereupon OTML immediately suspended these charter flights.
OTML liaised closely with Queensland Health and Queensland Police to agree on additional revised protocols for personnel to re-enter Australia, including one week of quarantine in PNG and return of negative tests for COVID-19 before departing on a commercial flight directly to Brisbane as an interim measure. On arrival in Australia our personnel will continue to comply with all current Australian quarantine requirements.
OTML stated: “We take very seriously the wellbeing of our personnel as well as our responsibility to the Australian community in relation to our FIFO travel. The Company continue to review the effectiveness of our control measures and adjust them based on World Health Organisation, PNG and Australian best practice advice. We would like to recognise and thank the work of the Queensland Police and Queensland Health for the extraordinary care provided to all our personnel”.
The Company added that as of Friday 12th March, the five positive cases have been released from the Cairns Hospital after completing their isolation period.