Prime Minister of Kyrgyzstan Mukhammedkaly Abylgaziev met with Scott Perry, President and CEO of Centerra Gold Inc., and some members of the Board of Directors of the Canadian company.
During the meeting, issues of the company’s activities and prospects for deepening cooperation in the interest of further improving the efficiency of the Kumtor mine were discussed.
Scott Perry informed Mukhammedkaly Abylgaziev that in the first half of 2019, Kumtor has produced 9.2 tons of gold (5.7 tons in 2018 for the same period).
In addition, according to him, $ 18 million have been approved for the geological exploration program for 2018-2019.
In May of this year, Centerra allocated additional $ 6 million for these purposes.
The parties stated that preliminary results allow to optimistically look at the prospects for extending the life of the Kumtor mine. This will positively influence tax and other payments, preservation of thousands of jobs, as well as the overall positive impact of the enterprise on the domestic economy.
The meeting participants also discussed the entry into force of the strategic agreement. It involves for the Kyrgyz side an increase in environmental payments, creation of a social partnership fund for development of regions, to which the Canadian company plans to transfer annual payments.
The parties noted that all the procedures for the entry into force of the strategic agreement should be completed in the near future.
Mukhammedkaly Abylgaziev stressed that for the first time, several representatives of Centerra’s Board of Directors visited the Kumtor mine at once in order to get acquainted with the work of the gold mining enterprise on site and to ascertain the positive dynamics in its main areas of work. He stressed the importance of the activities of the gold mining enterprise for the country’s economy and said that decision-making processes should take place in an open and transparent environment, taking into account the interests of Kyrgyzstan.
In addition, the head of Government stressed the importance of transfer of the Reclamation Trust Fund to the Kyrgyz Republic and timely and high-quality preparation of the mine reclamation project. Scott Perry supported this position and said that this issue would be worked out as part of the negotiations on a separate remediation agreement.
Mukhammedkaly Abylgaziev also drew special attention of Centerra representatives to the need for further strict compliance with environmental and technical standards at Kumtor enterprise to ensure its further effective activity.