This includes all aspects of buying, selling and exchanging currencies at current or determined prices. In terms of volume of trading, it is by far the largest market in the world. From Arawa, once the capital city of Bougainville, an autonomous region in eastern Papua New Guinea in the southwest Pacific Ocean, a long, winding road leads high up into the Crown Prince Ranges in the centre of the island through impenetrable rainforest. Over a ridge, the verdant canopy gives way to a landscape of gouged earth and, in the centre, a gaping crater, six kilometres long, is surrounded by the relics of gutted trucks and mine machinery rusting away into dust under bougainville kina forex market South Pacific sun.
The crisis was a fight for all people who are oppressed in the world. The place still resonates with the spirit of the indigenous Nasioi people who waged an armed struggle between 1989 and 1997, following an uprising to shut down one of the world’s largest open-cut copper mines, built with the aim of extracting the approximately one billion tonnes of ore that lay beneath the fertile land. Operated by Bougainville Copper Limited, a subsidiary of Conzinc Rio Tinto of Australia, the Panguna mine generated about two billion dollars in revenues from 1972-1989. Local communities watched as villages were forcibly displaced, customary land became unrecognisable under tonnes of waste rock, and the local Jaba River became contaminated with mine tailings, choking the waters and poisoning the fish. 1980s of 150,000, about 1,300 were employed in the mine’s operating workforce. 15,000 to 20,000 people, representing approximately 13 percent of the population at the time.
Greg Doraa, a Panguna district chief, recounted. Now, although the region of 300,000 people has secured a degree of autonomy from Papua New Guinea, the spectre of mining is still present, and with a general election underway, options for economic development are hotly debated. For the political elite, only mining can generate the large revenues needed to fulfil political ambitions as a referendum on independence from PNG, to be held by 2020, approaches. Indigenous communities continue to live around the edge of the Panguna copper mine in Bougainville, Papua New Guinea, which was forced to shut down in 1989. But for many landowners and farming communities, a far more sustainable option would be to develop the region’s rich agricultural and eco-tourism potential.