Royalties from the bauxite trade paid into the Pahang government’s coffers dropped by almost US$4.2 million as a result of the bauxite mining moratorium that was implemented fifteen days into the year.
Pahang’s head of government Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Adnan Yaakob told local media that the royalties received by the Pahang government in the first ten months of this year amounted to RM29.25 million. For comparison, the royalties collected by the Pahang government in the first ten months of 2015 totaled RM47.8 million, which is RM18.55 million above this year’s number.
“Yes, the implementation of the moratorium period has, more or less, affected the government’s income,” said Adnan in reply to a question by a member of the Pahang legislature.
Adnan went on to say that the moratorium, which has been extended several times so far this year, has significantly and positively impacted bauxite-related pollution problems in the area.
The state has taken in a grand total of RM24,345,616.16 in royalties over the past six years, according to Adnan. He also revealed that the state government has issued 41 permits so far this year. The government could easily withdraw the permits if the terms and conditions were violated, he explained.
Bauxite mining in Pahang has been shut down since January 15 after the state government responded to calls from residents to stop the rampant pollution and irresponsible mining methods engaged by several bauxite miners in the Bukit Goh area. Irresponsible mining methods in Kuantan led to the pollution of land, rivers and streams in the area, and severe pollution in the Bay of Kuantan.