Gabriel serves Romania govt with dispute notice over permitting battle

20th January 2015 By: Megan van Wyngaardt - Creamer Media Contributing Editor Online

JOHANNESBURG ( – TSX-listed gold company Gabriel Resources has served a notice of dispute to the Romanian government to seek an amicable resolution to the permitting and authorisation of the Roşia Montană gold and silver mine, which has been stalled for years waiting for a key environmental permit.

The company said on Tuesday that it had issued a formal notification to the President and Prime Minister of Romania, which requested Romanian authorities to formally engage in a process of consultation. Gabriel currently owned 80.96% of the project, while the State owned the remaining 19.31%.

Gabriel had not initiated any arbitration claim or application to any international arbitration court but, should it not obtain satisfactory resolution, it would seek full compensation for its rights to develop the project.

Gabriel CEO Jonathan Henry noted that the company was hopeful that the resolution would be reached without the need to escalate the dispute to arbitration. “We strongly believe that our past conduct has demonstrated the group’s overriding wish to avoid any protracted disputes and to partner with Romania in developing a world-class and sustainable mining project for the benefit of Romania and all stakeholders.”

The company believed that the project would impact positively on the international perception of, and economic growth within, Romania during its lifecycle from early-stage construction to the regeneration of the mine site after closure.

“With substantial direct investment in rehabilitation and preservation, the project would safeguard the cultural heritage of the region, kick-start other initiatives in the local economy, including tourism, and accelerate remediation of the severely polluted environment of Rosia Montana and its surrounds – caused by mining in earlier years,” Gabriel emphasised.

Henry added that the company was firmly committed to the development of the project and to the start of a modern mining industry in the country. “We remain certain that actual construction of a mine, using state-of-the-art technology will convince all those who have either unfounded or valid concerns as to the extensive benefits of the project for the country as a whole. We are ready to cooperate with Romania to achieve that goal.”

Further, the project was strongly supported by the local community, as it would alleviate poverty in the region.

The project had an estimated deposit of 10.1-million ounces of gold in reserve.