A year and a half ago, the Russian company
What has been done during this time, what problems do investors in
-It is increasingly said in
— I think such statements are of a certain populist nature. It is important, of course, to preserve the unique nature and ecology of our country. But there is a real economic situation, and it is, at least, irrationally not to use its wealth for the development of the country.
The competition for the sale of Jerooy field was conducted in 2015. As a result, the winner paid $ 100 million for the license. Vostok-Geoldobycha, Polyus Gold and Kyrgyzaltyn participated in the contest.
Today, the mining industry uses innovative technologies that minimize environmental risks.
Everything depends on the level of the development company, on its integrity and the professionalism of its employees.
— It’s not a secret that Jerooy was problematic. How did you settle the issue?
— The right to mining, that is, a license costs $100 million. This is the first precedent in the history of independent
But, in addition to purchase of the license, one of the conditions of the contest was to resolve the dispute in international courts with the former owners of the mine — Kazakh Visor investment group of companies. The amount of her claim to the government of
— Information that
— It is not a secret that Omurbek Babanov and Musa Bazhaev are friends. Babanov publicly stated this more than once. I will assume that he recommended his friend to invest in his country.
It is obvious that investing in Kyrgyzstan with its political and economic situation is a big risk, especially when it’s a large public corporation listed on the world market.
I think it was Babanov’s personal initiative, since Talas is his little homeland, and he, as a politician, is vitally interested in the development of this region in particular and in the development of the country as a whole. It should be noted that at that time he did not hold any posts, he was not a deputy.
The main beneficiary of the company is the Russian businessman Musa Bazhaev.
-But there is no smoke without fire?
— Strategic projects, such as Kumtor and Jerooy, are often politicized; they are used in political games. Everyone knows this.
— Do you monitor how the money paid by your company to the national budget is distributed?
— As we were informed by representatives of the Ministry of Finance, money was sent for the construction of 100 schools throughout the country and for social support of the region.
Three percent of the amount, that is, $ 3 million, was transferred to the rural administration where Jerooy is located, three percent — to Talas district and three percent — to Talas region.
There was one more condition — to provide a social package to the region. According to the agreement between the local government bodies, the
It should be noted that 70 percent from 100 million soms tranche are allocated as bank loans at 8 percent per annum and 30 percent are allocated for social projects in Talas region.
In 2015–2016, 450, 652 million soms were paid to the budget of Talas district. Other 6 million soms were received by the Social Fund of the
— At what stage is the project now, and when do you plan to proceed directly to mine development?
— Under the terms of the contest, the first year is for design work and the development of a technical project. But we faced with a number of problems here that do not depend on our company.
For example, we were surprised to learn that we have bought out the right to develop subsoil, but we do not have the right to use the land plot over them.Mikhail Shubin
It is clear that any design work was out of question in this situation. Land ownership right at that time belonged to the subsidiary of Visor CJSC Jerooyaltyn, which got it for use from Kyrgyzaltyn.
This was a big tangle of legal problems that we had to resolve until April 2016.
As a result of long negotiations with Kyrgyzaltyn we came to the decision that it would sell us these land plots at market price. The sum of the contract was 261 million soms. The Russian investors did not know anything about this conflict, of course. This is an absurd situation.
The second issue, which is also important, was the lack of adequate power supply.Mikhail Shubin
Yes, there is a power transmission line, connection to the electrical networks for domestic use, but the development of the field requires a capacity of 15 megawatts. The nearest substations could not provide such power. Our company appealed to the country’s leadership, ministries and departments, and as a result of long negotiations with NESK, energy companies, energy holding, the issue was decided only in January 2017. Under what conditions? We undertook to carry out reconstruction of the nearest substations in the amount of more than 66 million soms.
The next problem is environmental payments. At previous rates, we had to pay $ 84 million during the project implementation period.Mikhail Shubin
And here we had to think about the profitability of the project as a whole. It should be taken into account that there are no glaciers or forests around the mine, and our company uses the most innovative methods of waste reclamation. The very method of collecting environmental payments was developed without taking into account the peculiarities of the territories of the
Thus, the start of construction of infrastructure facilities is planned for the second quarter of
— What is the amount of budget payments?
— $ 492 million is payments to the budget for the entire period of the project’s work with a price of $ 1,000 for an ounce of gold.
— How do the company’s relations with the local population evolve? It’s not a secret that this problem has become a stumbling block for many mining projects.
— We understand why there is a certain negative from the local population. People are tired of various investors who promised a lot, literally «whole mountains of gold," but they did not start development. The credit of trust is exhausted.
We seriously dealt with the problem. We conducted information work, created a demonstration hall in Talas regional administration, where every resident can come and get acquainted with our work, hold roundtables and public hearings. I can say that as of today we have won a certain trust of the residents of Talas region and found a common language.