Published on Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee (http://gata.org)

Ecuador lifts mining bans on Kinross, Corriente

By cpowell
Created 2009-03-18 02:55

By Pablo Gaete
Business News Americas, Santiago, Chile
Tuesday, March 17, 2009

http://www.bnamericas.com/news/mining/Govt_officially_lifts_mining_ban_o... [1]

Canadian miners Kinross Gold and Corriente Resources have received official letters from the Ecuadorian government lifting their mining bans and allowing them to resume operations immediately.

Kinross spokesperson Steve Mitchell confirmed to BNamericas that the company received a letter from the government stating that it can restart work on the Fruta del Norte project, which it acquired in September through the purchase of Aurelian Resources.

Mitchell added that Kinross is reviewing the details of the letter and aims to proceed with operations first by acquiring permitting to resume exploration, and also intends to update Fruta del Norte's EIS and water permits.

Once those steps are complete, Kinross aims to carry out 8,000 meters of infill drilling to upgrade resources in order to prepare a pre-feasibility study. The drilling program is expected to take roughly three months to carry out, Mitchell said.

According to studies done by Aurelian, the project has an inferred resource of 58.9Mt grading 7.23g/t gold and 11.8g/t silver for 13.7Moz contained gold and 22.4Moz contained silver, using a cutoff grade of 2.3g/t gold-equivalent.

Meanwhile, Corriente issued a statement Tuesday saying it also received a letter -- signed by mines and oil minister Derlis Palacios -- lifting all restrictions on its field work in the country.

Corriente is developing the Mirador copper deposit, operates the Panantza-San Carlos red metal property, and has the San Miguel/La Florida, San Luis, San Marcos, Sutzu, and Dolorosa exploration targets in the country.

In April last year the Ecuadorian government froze all mining and exploration activities in the country pending the preparation of a new mining law. During the 2009 PDAC International Convention in Toronto on March 1-4 deputy mining minister Jose Serrano said the government would soon lift the ban.

As for the law, after making amendments President Rafael Correa approved the legislation in January after it was cleared by Congress. But Correa must still issue the final green light before the law can go into effect.

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