El­do­rado freezes Sk­ouries gold mine in­vest­ment

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

Cana­dian com­pany El­do­rado Gold said yes­ter­day that it is freez­ing in­vest­ment at the Sk­ouries gold mine in north­ern Greece and has ap­pealed to the Coun­cil of State, the coun­try’s high­est body of ar­bi­tra­tion, to up­hold its le­gal rights.

The break on the in­vest­ment has fu­eled con­cern among some 2,500 work­ers over the fu­ture of their jobs.

In a joint state­ment yes­ter­day, unions rep­re­sent­ing the work­ers con­demned the gov­ern­ment over its stance and de­manded a meet­ing with En­vi­ron­ment Min­is­ter Gior­gos Stathakis.

“Even at the fi­nal mo­ment, we are wait­ing for the gov­ern­ment to meet the prom­ise of growth it made to the peo­ple,” the state­ment said.

El­do­rado said yes­ter­day that the Sk­ouries pro­ject will be lim­ited to care and main­te­nance after the En­vi­ron­ment Min­istry failed to grant the nec­es­sary rou­tine per­mits, which has led to un­jus­ti­fi­able de­lays in the pro­ject – one of the big­gest in­vest­ments in Greece.

It said it was seek­ing the ar­bi­tra­tion of the Coun­cil of State be­cause of the gov­ern­ment’s non­com­pli­ance with pre­vi­ous rul­ings by the same court. El­do­rado said it will re­assess the in­vest­ment only if it re­ceives the re­quired ap­provals and per­mits. “Al­though we have made good progress on the Olympias mine, we re­quire the nec­es­sary per­mits and gov­ern­ment sup­port prior to investing fur­ther in Sk­ouries,” El­do­rado CEO Ge­orge Burns said in a state­ment.

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