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Watch NZH Local Focus: Company calls seabed mining proposal a significant opportunity for NZ

By Sieska Verdonk

On day two of the hearing to decide whether or not seabed mining will be allowed off South Taranaki's coast, the company that wants the iron ore laid out its case.

"The environmental effect is positive. There is local skills training, employment, and services for 20 years. Regionally there is diversification of economic activity and a new industry for New Zealand," says Alan Eggers, Chairman for Trans-Tasman Resources.

Trans-Tasman Resources argues there is nothing controversial about their plan

"Marine sand extraction or dredging is not a new concept in New Zealand or indeed the South Taranaki Bight. The project will not be using experimental equipment. TTR will not be leaving a giant quarry under the ocean," says Shawn Thompson, project manager for Trans-Tasman Resources.

It promises to give back to the community.

"I have been a driver in the company to ensure that there are local benefits, regional benefits, and of course we have those national benefits there, and we have talked about that in my evidence.

It clearly shows a commitment by the company," says Tokatumoana Walden, the man in charge of stakeholder engagement for Trans-Tasman Resources.

Trans-Tasman Resources admits it's relationship with some locals has not been easy.

"I'm disappointed that we couldn't have engaged more constructively. But, that's the choice. I'm still struggling to understand the principle of, if you don't engage, then how do we work through some of the key issues that you hold on this development?" says Mr Walden.

On Monday opponents of the proposal have their say.

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