Scientists find new way to power electric cars using cobalt

Researchers at the University of Massachusetts Lowell developed a technique that uses only water, carbon dioxide and cobalt metal particles that have surface nanostructures measuring billionths of a meter in size, to produce hydrogen on demand at relatively low temperature and pressure and to use to power the next generation of electric vehicles.

According to David K. Ryan, the project’s principal investigator, hydrogen can be used in fuel cells, which combine hydrogen with oxygen from the air to produce electricity at up to 85% efficiency.

“Other investigators have used all kinds of methods to produce hydrogen, such as electrolysis, natural gas reforming and even metals such as zinc, iron and nickel with acids, but not catalytically with cobalt,” Ryan said in a media statement. “The carbonate is involved in the reaction but it doesn’t change or get consumed; it just helps facilitate the conversion of the cobalt metal to cobalt oxide, and this conversion produces the hydrogen and carbon dioxide.”

Chemistry Prof. David Ryan, right, and graduate student Ahmed Jawhari examine a prototype of their invention that produces hydrogen gas cleanly and efficiently. Photo by University of Massachusetts Lowell.

The scientist explained that the experimental setup consists of a stainless steel canister filled with cobalt. A carbonate solution made from carbon dioxide and water is pumped through the canister and then warmed up to about 150 degrees. The solution is also compressed to about three atmospheres, or 45 pounds per square inch, which is about the same pressure as in a car tire.

“Under these relatively low-temperature and modest-pressure conditions, we were able to produce hydrogen efficiently, to nearly 70%. Subsequent work has allowed us to produce hydrogen at greater than 95% purity,” Ryan said.

The researcher explained that in an electric car, the hydrogen from the canister can go directly to the fuel cell, where it is mixed with oxygen from the atmosphere to produce electricity and water. The water can then be looped back into the canister and mixed with the carbonate to form the catalytic solution. The electricity produced by the fuel cell can be used to power the canister’s pump, heater and compressor, as well as the car’s electric motors, rechargeable storage battery and headlights.

“This process doesn’t store any hydrogen gas, so it’s safe and poses no storage or transportation issues. Once you stop the flow of the carbonate solution or release pressure in the reaction chamber, the hydrogen production stops, so hydrogen is produced only as needed,” Ryan said.

The experts suggested that once the cobalt metal in the canister is used up – that is, converted to cobalt oxide – the car driver can swap out the canister with a new one every 300 to 400 miles. The cobalt in the old canister can then be regenerated, using a renewable energy source such as wind or solar.

“So instead of going to a gas station to get a fill-up, you can go to a ‘refueling’ station and get a new canister. You can also bring extras for long trips,” Ryan said.

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Scotland closer to having its first commercial gold mine

Scotland is one step closer to having its first commercial gold and silver mine as Scotgold Resources (LON: SGZ) said Thursday it had submitted the last application to secure planning permits for its Cononish project, near Tyndrum.

The company, which has decided to liquidate its French subsidiary, said that it had worked with the Trossachs National Park Planning Authority (NPA) to secure all the necessary licences required for planning approval, adding it expects a formal decision soon.

Scotgold is anticipating a number of conditions, but said that it had made the necessary preparations to deal with them “as promptly as possible”.

The company envisions an underground mine with an initial production capacity of 23,500 ounces of gold annually for up to 17 years.

Cononish produced first gold in August 2016 following the launch of an ore processing trial and the plan is now to build a large-scale operation.

Scotgold Resources will do so by reopening an old mine shaft and moving 170,000 tonnes of rock, along with the mineral ore.

The company envisions an underground mine with an initial production capacity of 23,500 ounces of gold annually for up to 17 years.

As many as 52 jobs could be created during production, and the firm has offered nearly £500,000 (about $695K) in payments to support the local community of Tyndrum.

In addition, the company said Scottish Enterprise offered a Regional Selective Assistance grant of £430,000 for the development of the project. Scotgold estimates costs from the first phase of development to total £360,000. However, it noted that extra funds will not have a material impact on the returns.

Once final approval is granted, Scotgold will proceed with the financing for the development, though obtaining the approval of the Park Authority is seen as the key hurdle to cross.

Currently, the small village of Tyndrum is a local tourist destination, known mostly for being at a junction of major transport routes. It’s located in the northern part of the Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park.

photo: View of Cononish Mine showing (right to left) stockpiled ore, plant buildings and adit. (Image courtesy of Scotgold Resources.)

source:,  by Cecilia Jamasmie , 18/10/2018

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A gold-hungry bug opens door for more efficient biofuels

Researchers at the University of California – Berkeley have discovered that a bacterium named Moorella thermoacetica produces solar fuels through artificial photosynthesis in a very efficient way when fed with gold.

In a paper published in Nature Nanotechnology, the scientists explain that by placing light-absorbing gold nanoclusters inside the CO2-hungry bacterium, they have created a biohybrid system that produces a higher yield of chemical products.

Previous experiments had already turned M. thermoacetica into a tiny photosynthesis machine. Such tests consisted on attaching light-absorbing nanoparticles made of cadmium sulfide to the bacterial membrane exterior, which then resulted in the conversion of sunlight and carbon dioxide into useful chemicals.

However, even though cadmium sulfide has the ability to absorb visible light, it is toxic to bacteria and the nanoparticles had to be attached to the cell membrane “extracellularly,” or outside the M. thermoacetica-CdS system. This meant that some energy was lost in the process of turning CO2 into acetate, a valuable chemical for making solar fuels.

This got the scientists thinking about a better way to improve the bacterium’s ability to produce acetate. Eventually, they turned to nanoclusters made of 22 gold atoms (Au22) and the results were nothing but surprising because M. thermoacetica just loved it.

“We selected Au22 because it’s ideal for absorbing visible light and has the potential for driving the CO2 reduction process, but we weren’t sure whether it would be compatible with the bacteria,” said one of the authors of the study, Peidong Yang, in a media statement. “When we inspected them under the microscope, we discovered that the bacteria were loaded with these Au22 clusters – and were still happily alive.”

The researchers named Au22 “magic gold nanoclusters,” which they also selected because of their ultrasmall size: A single Au22 nanocluster is only 1 nanometer in diameter, which allows each nanocluster to easily slip through the bacterial cell wall.

Yang explained that by feeding bacteria with Au22 nanoclusters, he and his team were able to pushM. thermoacetica to produce 33 per cent more acetate.

This discovery supports UC-Berkeley’s ongoing efforts to find affordable, abundant resources for renewable fuels, and potential solutions to thwart the effects of climate change.”Next, we’d like to find a way to reduce costs, improve the lifetimes for these biohybrid systems, and improve quantum efficiency,” Yang said.

Source:, Valentina Ruiz Leotaud, 18/10/2018

Reference image by Randi Hausken, Flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0.

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Perth Mint unveils Australia’s most expensive gold-diamond coin

Australia’s Perth Mint has unveiled this week the most expensive collector coin in the country’ history — a diamond-encrusted treasure valued at $2.5 million ($1.8m).

Made of 99.99 percent pure gold, the coin features four rare Argyle pink and purplish-pink diamonds. The largest is 1.02 carat.

Named the Discovery Gold Coin, its design was inspired by the holey dollar, which was introduced by governor Lachlan Macquarie in 1814.

From a gemstone perspective, each of the four fancy pink diamonds in the coin’s reverse is accompanied by an original gem identification and authenticity document from Argyle Pink Diamonds. (Image courtesy of Bill Johnston | Twitter.)

The 2kg-coin comes in two parts, an outer ring and a centrepiece emulating colonial Australia’s first official coinage – the historic “holey dollar and dump.”

The coin will be on display at The Perth Mint’s retail store until the end of September, unless a collector with quite a bit of cash to spare snatches it earlier.

Source:, by Cecilia Jamasmie

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Gold recoils amid selloff but may rebound

Gold has fallen to a 20-month low amid sharp EM currency depreciation. At these levels, we believe the gold price may bounce back. Consumer demand is likely to be supportive in H2. And short positioning may quickly reverse should one of the many current macroeconomic risks materialise, increasing investment demand.

Momentum built as gold fell

The gold price lost 3% during the first half of August, a downturn that was exacerbated by gold’s fall below US$1,200/oz – an important technical support level – for the first time since early 2017.

Gold was propelled down by the strength of the US dollar against both developed and emerging market currencies, particularly, a weakening of the Chinese yuan first and Turkish lira later. In fact, the dollar’s strength has been one of the most important drivers of gold’s performance this year as confrontational trade rhetoric and sanctions has so far played in favour of the US. In addition, both the ECB and BOJ have delayed policy rate hikes, increasing differentials between interest rates in the US.

But gold may rebound due to both technical and fundamental reasons:

  • An usually short market
  • Financial market uncertainty remains
  • Natural buyers may step in


Gold’s pullback has been partly driven by dollar strength

Source: Bloomberg, ICE Benchmark Administration, World Gold Council, 23rd August 2018

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Egyptian copper’s origin revealed

Two new studies published in the Journal of Archaeological Science unveil where ancient Egyptians got the red metal from.

According to one the studies, led by Frederik Rademakers of KU Leuven in Belgium, there was predominant reliance on relatively local ore from the Eastern Desert and the Sinai Peninsula.

Based on isotope and chemical analyses of 40 metal samples from funerary objects and seven ore samples dating from the Predynastic, Protodynastic and Old Kingdom Periods, the research suggests significant developments in smelting technology that may have been adapted to different ore types.

“The underlying organization of early supply networks, clearly reliant on a variety of mining and production zones, and the development of copper production technology are only slowly revealed through ongoing research,” Rademakers said in a media statement.

The objects he and his team examined belong to the Royal Museums of Art and History in Brussels.

The second study, carried out by four Czech institutions, analyzed 22 artifacts from the Egyptian Museum of Leipzig University in Germany. The objects show similar production technology but diverse origins of the metal, including an Early Dynastic Egyptian object from Abusir that is high in nickel metal, something that is consistent with ores and artifacts from Early Bronze Age Anatolia, in present-day Turkey.

This research confirms that special metals had circulated around the Ancient Near East earlier than previously thought.

In the view of Erez Ben-Yosef, professor at the J. M. Alkow Department of Archaeology and Ancient Near Eastern Cultures, Tel Aviv University, the studies constitute an important step forward in current knowledge on copper provenance and the subsequent economic, social and cultural insights into ancient Egypt.

source:, by Valentina Ruiz Leotaud | 6 days ago |

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Exports enjoyed double-digit growth in first half of year

Greek exports enjoyed double-digit growth in June and also in the first six months of the year, data from the Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT) data has shown.

Expressing optimism that the rising trend will continue for the export sector for the rest of the year, the Panhellenic Exporters Association said it was encouraging to see the reduction in the trade deficit in the first six months of the year even though it increased significantly in June.

ELSTAT data released on Tuesday showed that exports amounted to around 3 billion euros (including fuel products) in June, recording annual growth of 24.8 percent. Excluding fuel, they reached 1.99 billion against 1.78 billion in June 2017, an 11.8 percent increase.

In the first half of the year, exports amounted to 16.44 billion, up 15.7 percent on last year’s figures. Excluding fuel products, the figure came to 10.98 billion, up 12.7 percent yearly. At the same time imports (excluding fuel) dropped 1.6 percent.

Nine of the top ten product categories saw an increase in exports, ranging from 6.8 to 35.7 percent in the first six months of the year. The only category to experience a fall was beverages and tobacco, which slipped 1.2 percent.

June recorded a significant increase in imports. Excluding fuel products, the value of imports in June stood at 3.38 billion, an increase of 12 percent. With fuel products factored in, imports stood at 4.97 billion, an increase of 27.1 percent.

The total value of imports in the first six months of the year amounted to 26.69 billion, up 4.5 percent. Excluding fuel products, imports were up 8 percent on the same period last year.

Including fuel, the trade deficit jumped 30.9 percent in June 2018 compared to the same month last year. Overall, however, the trade deficit decreased by 9.1 percent to reach 10.52 billion, compared to the 11.58 billion recorded in the first half of last year.


source:, 8/8/2018

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Mining is Driving the World’s Leading Innovations, Improving Products and the World

What if you could produce a product essential to countless consumer items, without any greenhouse gas emissions at all? Those are the thought going through the minds of innovators at Rio Tinto, which has been active in the aluminum sector for more than 110 years.

Rio Tinto, Alcoa and Apple are partnering to develop a revolutionary carbon-free smelting process to make aluminum, which produces oxygen and replaces all direct greenhouse gas emissions from the traditional aluminum smelting process. Combined, Rio Tinto, Alcoa, the Government of Canada, the Government of Quebec and Apple are investing $188 million (CAD).

In announcing the partnership, Rio Tinto chief executive J-S Jacques said, “This is a revolutionary smelting process that can deliver a significant reduction in carbon emissions. It builds on the key role aluminum has to play in driving human progress, by making products infinitely recyclable, stronger, lighter and more fuel efficient. Rio Tinto is proud to work with Alcoa, Apple and the governments of Canada and Quebec, to drive an innovation that can transform the industry and our customers’ supply chains.”

“This discovery has been a long-sought goal for the aluminum industry, and this announcement is the culmination of the work from many dedicated Alcoa employees. Today, our history of innovation continues as we take aluminum’s sustainable advantage to a new level with the potential to improve the carbon footprint of a range of products from cars to consumer electronics,” added Alcoa President and CEO Roy Harvey.


source:, July 2, 2018

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Russian scientists discover new mineral

An iron meteorite that was found in 2016 in Buryatia, southern Russia, provided the keys for the discovery of a new mineral called ‘uakitite,’ which is associated with sulfides, schreibersite and magnetite.

The discovery was made by researchers from the Ural Federal University, Novosibirsk State University and the Geological Institute at the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Science.

Given that the fragments found in the meteorite were extremely small, the scientists decided to obtain data on its crystal structure by using electron diffraction instead of a traditional X-ray analysis.

They found that temperatures of over 1000 degrees centigrade in the meteorite formed troilite-daubreelite associations, one of whose early minerals is uakitite. “It forms isometric (cubic) crystals (in daubreelite) or rounded grains (in schreibersite). The size of uakitite grains is usually less than 5 μm,” reads an abstract presented by the researchers at the 81st Annual Meeting of the Meteoritical Society.

Structurally, the new mineral is related to carlsbergite CrN and osbornite TiN.

The physical properties of uakitite were difficult to assess due to the tiny sizes of the grains, however, the researchers state that they know it has a yellow and transparent phase with metallic lustre, Mohs hardness is 9-10, it has a light gray colour with a pinky tint in reflected light and its density is calculated 6.128 g/cm3.


source:, by Valentina Ruiz Leotaud

Photo by

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Meghan Markle’s wedding band made with Welsh gold from historic mine

It’s the story of the weekend. Even if you don’t follow the Royals, you probably got a glimpse of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding somewhere.

One of the most important elements in the ceremony was the wedding ring, particularly the one given to the bride. Similar to her engagement ring and following a 100-year-old tradition, Markle’s band was fashioned from a piece of Welsh Gold, gifted by Her Majesty The Queen.

The 24-carat piece of gold originated at the Clogau St. David mine, located near Bontddu in northwest Wales and owned by Clogau Gold of Wales. The Royals started receiving nuggets of the yellow metal from this mine back in 1923.

From Clogau St. David was also extracted the gold behind three generations of royal wedding bands, including those of the Queen Mother, the Queen, Princess Margaret, the Princess Royal and Diana, Princess of Wales.

Later on, in 1986, the Windsors started receiving gold from the Gwynfynydd mine, which is also located in northwest Wales and is now owned by Clogau.

The Clogau St. David and Gwynfynydd mines are currently closed, having last operated in the 1990s. However, early this year it was announced that the former might reopen.

London-based Alba Mineral Resources said it has taken a 49 per cent interest in Gold Mines of Wales Limited and that it had decided to restart the project because it sits on “a vastly under-explored exploration ground.”

In terms of Prince Harry’s wedding ring, a press release issued by Buckingham Palace revealed that his was made of platinum with a textured finish.

The couple chose Cleave and Company to make their bands. They were carried to St. George’s Chapel by The Duke of Cambridge Prince William, Harry’s older brother and best man.

Cleave and Company also crafted Markle’s engagement ring, which was designed by the Prince himself and features a yellow gold band and a central stone from Botswana, where Harry traveled to while growing up and again in the summer of 2017 to celebrate his now wife’s 36th birthday.


Photo from Buckingham Palace’s Facebook page.


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US lab mines gold from discarded SIM cards

Researchers at the Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque are using ultrasonic waves to strip gold from SIM cards.

In a report by ABC, materials chemist Dale Huber said that even though many different research groups are trying to recover the yellow metal from electronic waste, in most cases they are using environmentally unfriendly techniques like separating gold from other components by boiling off mercury and letting the fumes go into the air.

To avoid such practice, Huber’s team is submerging SIM cards in water and blasting it with ultrasonic waves. The process creates bubbles that collapse and when they do so, they can “shoot out a jet that hits the surface and actually physically breaks off pieces of metals,” Huber told the Australian broadcaster.

The researchers are still in the process of refining the new method, however, the idea is to develop the technology into a larger scale operation.


source:, Valentina Ruiz Leotaud

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Eldorado scores key win in row with Greece over projects

Canada’s Eldorado Gold (TSX:ELD)(NYSE:EGO) has won a key battle in its ongoing row with Greece after an arbitration panel ruled in favour of the company’s plans to build a plant for treating concentrates form the Olympias and Skouries projects, in the country’s north.

The panel rejected allegations that a technical study submitted by Eldorado was deficient and in violation of a transfer contract and the environmental terms of the project.

The panel’s verdict rejects the Greek government’s motion that the company violated its contractual obligations by submitting a deficient plan for the Madem Lakkos metallurgy plant, Eldorado said.

Authorities had also argued Eldorado breached a 2003 contract by which its subsidiary Hellas Gold acquired the Kassandra assets — Olympias, Skouries and Stratoni — in the country’s Halkidiki region.

The company’s President and CEO, George Burns, hailed the ruling. “We believe this decision provides a foundation to allow us to advance dialogue with the Greek government in order to define a mutually-agreeable and clear path forward for our Kassandra investments,” he said in the statement.

Burns added the company expected the Greek government to fulfil its obligations under the 2003 contract, including issuing the outstanding permits for the Skouries project.

Speculation surrounding the outcome of the arbitration lifted the company’s shares on Tuesday. It closed almost 6.6% higher in Toronto to Cdn$1.14 — the stock’s best day in six months.

Eldorado scores key win in row with Greece over projects

Source: Google Finance.

In September, the Vancouver-based firm threatened to halt new investments in its three key projects unless the government granted it permits and showed a willingness to engage in talks.

As a result, Eldorado was almost immediately granted several of the pending permits, with Greek authorities saying they were open to engage in talks with the company. The miner then postponed its decision to leave the country, but warned it reserved the right to place its assets on care and maintenance and to take prompt legal action to protect both the company and its assets should negotiations proved unsuccessful.

As talks with authorities stalled, the gold miner stopped in November all development and investment in its Skouries gold project located in the country’s northern region of Halkidiki.

Eldorado also initiated legal actions against the government in order to enforce and protect its rights in Greece. The measures include three lawsuits against the Ministry of Energy and Environment for failing to issue routine installation permits, which Eldorado said caused unjustifiable delays to the development of Skouries.

Last week, the company filed a new technical report for the gold project, which said it “significantly” reduces the development’s environmental footprint.

For this year, the company has forecast $20 million in development capital with future care and maintenance costs at Skouries estimated at $3 million to $5 million annually.


source:, by Cecilia Jamasmie

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Steel and aluminium companies fear indirect hit from US tariffs

Greece’s steel industry is on high alert after US President Donald Trump’s decision to slap a 25 percent tariff on imports of the commodity.

Greek firms do not export to the US, but the obstacles that Washington is raising to the flow of steel from abroad are expected to turn many major companies to markets where Greece currently exports to, thereby weighing on profit margins and reducing raw material prices.

The Aluminium Association of Greece added that if a 10 percent levy is added to the existing 3.5 percent tax in the US, there is a risk the European market will be flooded with aluminium products from third countries.


source:, ANESTIS DOKAS, 2/3/2018

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German scientists to build machine that speeds up urban mining processes

Scientists at the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, Germany, want to build a machine that is able to disassemble two mobile phones in one minute and remove its components to, later on, extract metals from them.

The process is known as urban mining and it aims to recover raw materials such as copper, silver, gold, neodymium, and tantalum from old electronic devices. The metals would be destined to the production of new cellphones, computers, tablets, etc.

Following the extraction of individual, larger components, a laser would be used to unsolder them from the electronic circuit board before they are sorted by type and treated differently to make them reusable.

In an interview with Horizon Magazine, Cord Fricke-Begemann from the Fraunhofer Institute said that the main challenge his team is facing right now, when it comes to the machine’s design, is figuring out how to make it work with all the different types of electronics that exist.

“There are hundreds of different types of mobile phones so we need a device that is flexible and can handle all of them,” Fricke-Begemann told the institutional publication.

According to the researcher, turning to this type of mining and making it more efficient would not only support the EU efforts to move towards a low-carbon economy, but it would also reduce the bloc’s dependence from foreign metal providers and shield it from fluctuating prices.

According to Horizon, some urban mining already takes place in the region but it involves melting devices together in a furnace and removing the most valuable metals.


SOURCE:, Valentina Ruiz Leotaud, 26/2/2018

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New shaft will extend EU’s largest gold mine to 2035

Agnico Eagle plans to spend 160 million euros to expand its Kittilä mine in Finland

The biggest gold mine in the European Union is getting a new lease on life, thanks to a shaft sinking project that will increase throughput.

Reporting its fourth-quarter and full-year results last Thursday, Agnico Eagle Mines (TSX,NYSE:AEM) said it will invest 160 million euros on expanding its Kittilä gold mine in Lapland, northern Finland, including the construction of a kilometre-deep mine shaft.

“The expansion project is expected to increase the efficiency of the mine and decrease or maintain current operating costs while providing access to the deeper mining horizons”: Agnico Eagle Mines 

Lower gold grades in the mining area for 2018 and 19 has meant lower expected production from the mine in the next two years – 10,000 ounces less this year and 20,000 next year. As a result the Toronto-based company approved a plan in 2017 to increase throughput 25% from 1.6 million tonnes per annum to 2mtpa by 2021. Higher rates will be achieved through a new 1.4 kilometre shaft and a modification to the 4,500 tonnes per day mill, as well as other infrastructure and service upgrades.

Agnico Eagle adds the increased throughput rate is further supported by additional drilling that has yielded favourable results in the Rimpi and Sisar zones.

“The expansion project is expected to increase the efficiency of the mine and decrease or maintain current operating costs while providing access to the deeper mining horizons.  In addition, the shaft is expected to provide access to the mineral resource areas below 1,150 metres, where recent exploration programs have shown promising results,” the company stated.

The new shaft will have hoisting capacity of 2.7 mtpa (2.0 mtpa of ore and 0.7 mtpa of waste), while the mill expansion involves installation of a secondary crushing circuit, new thickener and reactor capacity, and minor modifications to the existing grinding circuit and autoclave.

The improvements will boost average annual gold production by 50,000 to 70,000 ounces per year starting in 2021.

In 2016 Kittilä, located about 150 kilometres north of the Arctic Circle, produced 202,508 ounces. It contains proven and probable reserves of 4.5 million ounces as of the end of December. Gold deposits were discovered in 1986 by Finnish geologists and underground mining has taken place there since 2010, states a project page.

Agnico Eagle beat its 2017 guidance of 1.68 million ounces by producing a record annual gold output of 1.71 million ounces. All in sustaining costs for the year were $804 per ounce, lower than the most recent guidance of $845 per ounce. The company grew its mineral reserves last year (net of production) by 3.1% to 20.6 million ounces, with grades increasing by about 7.7%, due to the conversion of resources to reserves at Amaruq, in Nunavut, Canada. Gold production is expected to increase in 2018 and 2019 as the Meliadne mine in Nunavut starts up and production at Meadowbank, also in Nunavut, extends into 2019. Production is expected to reach about 2 million ounces in 2020.


source:, 19.2.2018

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Complex engineering and metal-work discovered beneath ancient Greek ‘pyramid’

Latest find on Cyclades’ Keros includes evidence of metal-working and suggests the beginnings of an urban centre, say archaeologists.

More than 4,000 years ago builders carved out the entire surface of a naturally pyramid-shaped promontory on the Greek island of Keros. They shaped it into terraces covered with 1,000 tonnes of specially imported gleaming white stone to give it the appearance of a giant stepped pyramid rising from the Aegean: the most imposing manmade structure in all the Cyclades archipelago.

But beneath the surface of the terraces lay undiscovered feats of engineering and craftsmanship to rival the structure’s impressive exterior. Archaeologists from three different countries involved in an ongoing excavation have found evidence of a complex of drainage tunnels – constructed 1,000 years before the famous indoor plumbing of the Minoan palace of Knossos on Crete – and traces of sophisticated metalworking.

The entrance staircase from above: the sea level was much lower in the early bronze age

The Dhaskalio promontory is a tiny island as the result of rising sea levels, but 4,500 years ago was attached by a narrow causeway to Keros, now uninhabited and a protected site. In the third millennium BC Keros was a major sanctuary where complex rituals were enacted. Earlier excavations by the team from the University of Cambridge, the Ephorate of Antiquities of Cyclades and the Cyprus Institute have uncovered thousands of marble Cycladic sculptures – the stylised human figures which inspired western artists, including Pablo Picasso – and which appear to have been deliberately broken elsewhere and brought to the island for burial.

Maintaining as well as constructing the settlement would have taken a huge communal effort. The now-deserted slopes of Dhaskalio were once covered with structures and buildings, suggesting that 4,500 years ago it was one of the most densely populated parts of the islands – despite the fact that it could not have been self-sufficient, meaning that most food, like the stone and the ore for metal working, had to be imported.

The first evidence of metal-working was found in excavations 10 years ago. The new finds have uncovered two workshops full of metalworking debris, and objects including a lead axe, a mould for copper daggers and dozens of ceramic fragments from metalworking equipment including the mouth of a bellows. Archaeologists will return to excavate an intact clay oven, found at the very end of the last season.

Joint director of the excavation Michael Boyd, of the University of Cambridge, said metalworking expertise was evidently concentrated at Dhaskalio at a time when access to both skills and raw materials was very limited.

“What we are seeing here with the metalworking and in other ways is the beginnings of urbanisation,” he said. Far-flung communities were drawn into networks centred on the site, craft and agricultural production was intensified, and the architecture became grander, gradually overshadowing the original importance of the sanctuary.

Excavated soil reveals food traces including pulses, grapes, olives, figs and almonds, and cereals, including wheat and barley. Evi Margaritis of the Cyprus Institute said: “Much of this food was imported: in the light of this evidence we need to reconsider what we know about existing networks to include food exchange.”

A researcher holds a mould for making a spearhead from molten copper.
 A researcher holds a mould for making a spearhead from molten copper. Photograph: Michael Boyd

The pyramid of terraces would have blazed in the Greek sun, visible from far off, covered in white stone imported from Naxos 10 kilometres away. The complex of drainage tunnels was discovered when archaeologists were excavating an imposing staircase in the lower terraces: research continues to discover whether they were for fresh water or sewage.

Lord Renfrew, joint director of the excavation, former Disney professor of archaeology at Cambridge and now the senior fellow at the McDonald Institute for archaeological research, first landed on Keros as a student and has returned often throughout his long career. He believes the promontory may originally have become a focus for development because it guarded the best natural harbour on the island, with wide views across the Aegean.

The excavations are being recorded digitally, using the iDig programme running on iPads for the first time in the Aegean. This creates three-dimensional models using photogrammetry recording of the entire digging process, giving everyone involved access to all data in real time.

  • This article was amended on 18 January 2018 to correct an erroneous reference to the palace of Knossos, which is Minoan, not Mycenaean.


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Gold cracks $1300 to finish year up 12.5%- Best performance since 2010

Gold bulls have something to cheer about today even before the champagne corks fly on Sunday night.

In afternoon trading on Friday, the last business day of the year, gold was bid up to $1306.50, before dropping to $1303 at 13:53 EST. It was the first time since August, corresponding with a terrorist attack in Barcelona, that gold crossed the important $1300 an ounce thresshold. The yellow metal hit a 52-week high of $1346 an ounce in early September but then quickly sold off. February Comex gold was last trading at $1307.10, up .76% on the day.

On Tuesday spot gold reached a three-week high of $1281.03 in post-holiday trade on geopolitical concerns, while February gold futures hit $1285.10.

The gains continued yesterday, with spot gold closing in New York at $1294.70.

Today’s price jump means gold has posted a monthly rise of 1.51% and a yearly advance of 12.53% – its best annual performance since 2010.

A wilting US dollar, political tensions and less concern over the impact of US interest rate hikes, all fed into the gold rally.

Reuters noted the dollar is heading towards its worst year since 2003, “damaged by tensions over North Korea, the Russian scandal surrounding U.S. President Donald Trump’s election campaign, and persistently low U.S. inflation.”

The ICE U.S. Dollar Index dropped 0.5% on Friday, deepening its 2017 loss to 9.7%.

According to analysts the $1300 target will be the psychological level to reach in the new year.

“Look for continued steady gold over the 200-day moving averages and as gold is under invested. If we close over $1,300 more asset allocators joining the long side,” Kitco quoted George Gero, managing director at RBC Wealth Management. “Gold is still much about the dollar weakness, bonds — ten-year [yields] not moving after rate hike — and tax season in full swing.”


SOURCE:, Andrew Topf , 30/12/2017

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Thessaloniki Port Sold to German Fund

Although delayed for a few days, the announcement concerning the privatization of the Thessaloniki port came late on Thursday, by the country’s liquidation fund.

The Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund has announced the sale of its 67% stake in Thessaloniki Port to Deutche Invest Equity Partners, Belterra Investments and CMA CGM’s ports division, Terminal Link.

The German-led joint venture – called South Europe Gateway Thessaloniki (SEGT) – beat out bids from International Container Terminal Services Inc. (ICTSI) and DP World to win the concession agreement.

HRADF had asked the bidders to improve their first-round offers in April, and SEGT’s proposal came out ahead.

The price of the shares acquisition was $275 million, and the contract requires a further $215 million investment in the port within the next seven years, along with concession revenues. In total, the agency estimates that the agreement is worth $1.3 billion.

“The exploitation of the Thessaloniki port along with the positive impact the successful conclusion of the exploitation agreement of Piraeus Port already has, form an axis of growth and development that crosses vertically our country, further enhancing the role of Greece as the European gateway to international companies for trade and cruise,” said HRADF chairman Aris Xenofos.

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Market test set to determine the course of PPC plant privatization

The agreement for the sale of lignite-fired power plants owned by Public Power Corporation was sealed last Thursday in Brussels, and the government’s next challenge on the matter is attracting investment interest, otherwise it will have to sell hydroelectric units too – its last line of defense in the controversial issue of reducing PPC’s lignite capacity.

Although Energy Minister Giorgos Stathakis is optimistic about the outcome of next month’s market test, there is no sign from investors in that direction. People active in the domestic power market appear certain about the opposite – that the failure of the market test will bring them closer to their goal of entering the hydroelectric market.

Domestic investors start from the view that “lignite as a form of fuel is not productive” in the context of European Union’s policy to reduce carbon emissions, and go as far as saying they will abstain from the December market test, which is intended to gauge investor interest in the plants to be privatized.

Given that this will constitute a major shift in the domestic power market, and until the issues regarding the sale of the plants become clear, investors will keep monitoring developments and no one can rule out a change in their attitude.

Speaking to local investors, one gleans a variety of positions on the matter. The most emphatic attitude comes from Italy’s Edison, which cooperates with Hellenic Petroleum through Elpedison in electricity production: Edison sources say the firm is not interested in investing in lignite units and expect that other investors have a similar attitude.

The mind-set is similar at Hellenic Petroleum, with a source telling Kathimerini that “the EU policies on coal render the acquisition of lignite units a negative investment,” adding that the participation of a European investor in the market test would come as a surprise. Mytilineos sources echo the same view, adding the firm will not take part in the tests.

However, Terna does seem interested in the sale of the PPC lignite plants, while Copelouzos appears to be in two minds about it, having previously shown an interest in cooperation with China’s Shenhua. Sources say the Chinese interest in the Greek lignite plants has diminished.


source:,  by Chryssa Liaggou,  26/11/2017

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Keith Neumeyer: The numbers sound crazy, but I predict $8,000 gold & $130 silver

Keith says the reason the resource markets are lagging is due to institutions not entering the metal market. Until there is a crack in the major markets, we will not see institutional money flow into the mining equities. The market is quite similar to the year 2000 when it was flat and then took off. History is repeating itself. We need some sort of correction and sane-ness to enter the market. He feels the coming bull market will be quite impressive.

He thinks the mining sector over the next decade will become a much more efficient business. Miners will be in a rising metal price environment. He’s not concerned about being wrong in the short term to be right in the long run. When the market turns, it will turn quickly.

The current silver price is almost a joke. We’ve seen lead, zinc, nickel, lithium, and cobalt make significant price rises but gold and silver remain flat. Silver is ignored as a cheap gold substitute, and that is a wrong assumption. Silver is a strategic metal needed in all sorts of applications, and modern society would not function without it. It’s shocking that this hasn’t been noticed by more people as a result production continues to decline.

Platinum metals are not that interesting to Keith as they are small, illiquid markets. They are quite volatile, and platinum jewelry looks much like silver so why not just buy silver. Now that the world is moving toward electric vehicles he thinks the reasons for owning platinum have declined.


Palisade Research, from

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Mining equipment + Internet of Things

In the 2011 film Limitless, a struggling writer obtains a mysterious pill that enables him to access 100 percent of his brain abilities, helping him to reap monetary benefits by becoming a financial wizard. For the mining industry, that mysterious pill is the Internet of Things.

The introduction

Widely credited to Kevin Aston while working at Proctor & Gamble in 1999, the Internet of Things (loT) refers to a giant network of connected objects or “things.” These connected things, which can vary from a smartphone to a mining truck, utilize embedded technology to transfer data over a network without requiring human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction. In fact, the concept aims to utilize analytics in order to replace the human decision-making process altogether.

The mining industry has turned the innovation dial up in the past few years, implementing newer and more diverse technologies to solve age-old questions. The big potential for loT in the mining industry lies in the equipment it uses.

In recent years, mining companies have begun equipping machinery with unique sensors and software to collect data from everyday activities. This “big data” is now emerging as potential information that can be analyzed and utilized to allow manufacturers the ability to predict and eliminate potential problems. The Internet of Things has the power to take mining equipment and operations to new heights.

Technology research consultant Gartner Inc. expects the number of connected products in the mining industry to rise from 24 million in 2014 to 90 million by 2020. According to the consultant firm, the 25 percent increase in mining connectivity is among the fastest in the industry sectors.

New era for mining

The Internet of Things is expected to ring in a new era for mining operations and equipment. With the way things are going for the commodities sector, it couldn’t be any sooner.

“Ten years ago, these were dumb bits of equipment. If the computer in the office fell over, who cared? Now underground mines are full of optical fiber and bits of equipment that talk to one another,” said Mike Elliot of EY in Australia.

For one, loT will assist in the predictive/preventative maintenance for mining vehicles, which has become increasingly important in recent times. Through the use of sensors, companies will have the ability to monitor everything from fluid temperatures, engine speed, gear position and brake pressure. Information from the sensors will be relayed to a remote monitoring center that will then alert the equipment operator of potential trouble before it happens. The technology will provide data analytics of the truck performance data to prevent unnecessary maintenance events and to reduce the time to repair the truck during unplanned maintenance events.

Similar to the film, loT also has the ability to empower mining equipment in order to function and operate with optimal efficiency.

“Lots of these machines have been sending data for more than 30 years, but we did not have the ability to use it,” says Al Frese, solutions and technology manager for mining sales and support at Caterpillar. “Now we have that and can do it effectively across many different sites.”

US-based Caterpillar Inc. is a major player investing in the Internet of Things. Last year, the company spent $2.14 billion on product-oriented research and development alone.

Rob Charter, a group president at Caterpillar, has said that the company wants to surround customers with a tech-savvy suite of products and services. It’s about moving beyond simply making machines, he’s noted.

“Originally, when we built product, it was about the product,” Charter said. “What we think about all the time these days—and you’ll see it more and more in people’s thinking—is how do we make a customer successful? And if they’re successful and they rely on us, then we’re successful.”

Unlimited potential

The Internet of Things is expected to take the mining industry into a new helm of operational excellence.

In its 2013 report called Disruptive Technologies: Advances that will Transform Life, Business and the Global Economy, the McKinsey Global Institute stated that the Internet of Things will be largely used by the mining industry in the near future for data collection, monitoring process, decision-making and optimizing workflows.

For the mining industry, the Internet of Things holds unlimited potential as the future could consist of flying drones, automatic drill rigs, trains and driverless trucks. The technology will not only optimize processes, but it will prevent accidents, predict maintenance and even help companies conserve their resources like water and electricity.

NFL coaching legend Vince Lombardi once said: “Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence.”

With the mining industry adopting new technologies and taking loT under its wing, the industry could reach new levels in coming years.


source:, By STAFF WRITER . Sep 14, 2015

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Arbitration has begun

The arbitration between the State and Hellas Gold officially started yesterday, after the arbitration panel was established.  According to sources the position of presiding arbitrator has been taken by Konstantinos Menoudakos, former president of the Council of State and current president of the Hellenic Data Protection Authority. Mr. Menoudakos was appointed to the post of presiding arbitrator by the President of the Hellenic Supreme Court in accordance with the arbitration clause and was accepted by both arbitrators, Mr. Chryssikos and Mr. Lykoudis who had been appointed some time ago by the State and Hellas Gold.  In practical terms the results of the arbitration process are expected to be known shortly, within 90 days at most.

The key topic is the metallurgy plant at Madem Lakkos, which in effect relates to integration of Hellas Gold’s operations in the Halkidiki area.  The arbitration notice states that the technical study for the metallurgy plant in the Madem Lakkos area at Stratoni which will be used to process concentrates from Olympias and Skouries, which was filed in December 2014, is not complete and so breaches the transfer agreement and the project’s environmental Terms and conditions.  For its part the company points out that it fully believes that the technical study is fully documented and in accord with the transfer agreement, the business plan and the approved environmental terms and conditions for the project.


source: Newspaper Naftemporiki, 3/11/2017

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This new method for getting gold from e-waste may be just what miners need

A small Canadian company’s new way of extracting gold and other precious metals is showing big promise for the mining industry, and for efforts to deal with the growing problem of electronic waste.

The CEO of Vancouver-based EnviroLeach Technologies says the new approach is also the biggest innovation for conventional gold mining in 150 years.

“The advent of cyanide in the 1870’s was the biggest innovation in all of mining history, and this challenges that,” says Duane Nelson. “Our technology has equal-to or better leach kinetics than cyanide, and a much broader base of available ores and concentrates that it can be used on. So this is potentially a game changer for the mining sector.”

New water-based extraction process aims to become an alternative to acid- and cyanide-based leaching.EnviroLeach’s new plant, a joint venture with electronics giant Jabil Inc., will open in December in Memphis, Tennessee. The 650,000 square foot plant will shred and pulverize discarded circuit boards and other electronic waste. Then, using proprietary technology, Jabil will extract gold and other precious metals from the e-waste to manufacture electronic components for Dell, Hewlett-Packard and other clients.

Because it’s water-based and uses harmless ingredients, Nelson says the process is far more environmentally friendly than extraction by cyanide, hot acid digestion or other conventional methods.

“You can put your hand in it,” says Nelson. “You can effectively drink the stuff,” he says, adding it’s also less expensive because the solution can be used repeatedly.

Applying inorganic electro-chemistry research methods, Nelson says EnviroLeach’s team of 20 scientists “stumbled upon” the new technique. Ore concentrate or pulverized e-waste is mixed with ordinary water containing five ingredients. The solution is then pumped through cells of small, man-made diamond plates and then zapped with electricity. The gold and other precious metals separate and are extracted from the solution, which can be recharged and used again.

This new method for getting gold from e-waste may be just what miners needWith environmentalists pressuring governments to deal with the growing mountains of e-waste around the world, EnviroLeach and Jabil shareholders see huge profits in recycling the 50 million tonnes of e-waste dumped in landfills every year.

But Nelson says the new process can also unlock riches for conventional mining. Unlike cyanide or hot acid digestion, Nelson says the new process doesn’t damage equipment. More importantly, it could be used in locations where cyanide is banned.

“So there are hundreds of mines out there that could benefit from this technology,” he says.

Does cheap, effective and environmentally safe mining sound too good to be true? Nelson has this response for the skeptics.

“You know, cyanide sounded too good to be true in the 1800’s. Personal computers sounded too good to be true,” he says. “It’s innovation, and the mining sector has not been one of the most innovative sectors out there.

“The environment will benefit, the mining sector will benefit, our shareholders will benefit. I think everyone is going to benefit from this.”

source:, by Des Kilfoil
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Scientists use gold to improve microlaser technology

By attaching gold nanoparticles to the surface of a microlaser, scientists at the University of Southern California Viterbi School of Engineering demonstrated that it is possible to create frequency combs that take up less space and require 1000 times less power than current industrial comb technology.

Frequency combs are large and highly energy-consuming devices that can create a rainbow of light from a single colour and are generally used to improve cybersecurity, GPS systems and the detection of toxic chemicals.

In order to create systems that could enable residential or portable applications, the USC researchers decided it was important to figure out how to reduce both the size of the device and the power requirements for wavelength generation. They found their answer in gold specks 1/100,000 the size of a human hair.

By attaching gold nanorods to the surface of a single microlaser, the research team led by Andrea Armani, a professor in the Mork Family Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, was able to run lab tests which showed that frequency combs can function with only milliwatts of input power, which decreases the system’s footprint and takes the technology from the lab to real-world applications.

The way it works is that the interaction of the light from the microlaser with the gold particles results in many additional wavelengths being generated, a process that is further improved by a polymer coating on the nanoparticles.

“The role of the gold nanorods is to increase the intensity of the light circulating in the device,” co-lead author Vinh Diep said in a press release. “The higher-intensity light can then interact with organic molecules on the surface of the gold to generate other wavelengths of light. This combined effect allows for the comb generation to begin at a much lower power than the traditional pulsed-laser approach.”

Diep also explained that by using the gold nanorod coating, they observed a comb that can span over a wavelength range of 300 nanometers. Without the gold nanorods, a comb could not be generated at the same power.

“Demonstrating a large range shows the device’s strong potential for applications in developing a portable chemical spectroscopy system, where the chemical signal only occurs at a specific wavelength, and the accuracy is dependent on the light source,” the group of researchers concluded.


source:,Valentina Ruiz Leotaud

photo by Gerd Altmann, Pixabay.

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Eldorado mine arbitration to start in September

Greece plans to start an arbitration process this month to settle its differences with Canada’s Eldorado Gold Corp over its gold mine development plans in northern Greece, its energy minister said on Thursday.

Greece had previously planned to start the process last month. “We have decided to resort to arbitration to stop the tug of war which has been going on for many years and have things cleared up,” Energy Minister Giorgos Stathakis told Greek state television.

Stathakis said the arbitration process will begin on September 15 and will last three months. Eldorado is developing the Skouries and Olympias projects in northern Greece, where it also operates the Stratoni mine. Skouries has been a particular flash point with the authorities, with differences lasting for years over testing methods applied to comply with environmental regulations. [Reuters]

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Eldorado’s condolences for the tragic accident

With a press release dated August 29, 2017, Eldorado Gold expresses its condolences for the tragic accident in Skouries. CEO George Burns has also a few words to say.

Eldorado Gold (“Eldorado” or the “Company”) today regrets to report that on the morning of August 28, 2017, during tree cutting operations at the Skouries Project in Greece, a contractor employee was struck by a branch from a falling tree resulting in fatal injuries. An investigation is underway.

“Our deepest condolences and support go out to the individual’s family, friends and colleagues at this time,” said George Burns, Eldorado’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “Safety is our top priority at Eldorado Gold and we are committed to the well-being of our employees and contractors on all of our sites.”



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Greece’s Syriza revives radical policies in effort to placate base

“Eldorado Gold, facing the threat of a lengthy arbitration process with the government over permits to complete a gold-mining and processing plant at Skouries in northern Greece, warns that 1,200 jobs are at stake in an area of high unemployment. Production at Skouries was due to start this year but has now been pushed back to 2020”

After the reforms came the backlash.
Greece’s cabinet may be focused on implementing economic reforms agreed in return for an €86bn third international bailout but the government has also revived some of its radical polices in an effort to placate its core supporters, fearful that the leftwing party has gone soft under pressure from the bailout monitors.
Measures adopted last month by the Syriza government of Alexis Tsipras, prime minister, take aim at the party’s traditional enemies: high-earning lawyers and doctors, foreign-trained academics and private investors from abroad.
A tax squeeze on Greek professionals is being tightened, new legislation on universities rolls back reforms aimed at boosting academic standards, and the authorities are further delaying a €1.5bn gold extraction project by Canada’s Eldorado Gold, the country’s largest foreign investor.
Meanwhile, self-described anarchists with links to Syriza’s far-left faction have staged attacks on business premises and public buildings, smashing windows and throwing paint in scenes that recalled street protests early in the Greek crisis. Police made only a few arrests, and no case has so far come to court.
Nikos Voutsis, parliamentary speaker, shrugged off an incident last month in which members of Rubicon, an anarchist group, forced their way into the main courtyard of parliament demanding the release of a convicted terrorist. “Where violence [against persons] isn’t involved such events should be handled with tolerance,” Mr Voutsis said.
Analysts say the Syriza government is keen to reclaim its leftwing credentials after successfully completing a second bailout review, winning praise from its creditors, the EU and the International Monetary Fund, and securing the disbursement of a much-needed €8.5bn aid tranche.
In a move that underlined recovering confidence in Greece’s prospects, Athens returned to the sovereign debt market in July for the first time in three years with a €3bn bond issue. The economy is set to grow this year by 1.5 per cent, its best performance since 2007.
As part of the bailout terms, the government also agreed to implement a drastic reduction in the income tax threshold next year and make additional cuts to pensions, which have shrunk by 50 per cent during the crisis. These moves have helped bolster support for the opposition. In opinion polls, the conservative New Democracy party holds a double-digit lead over Syriza. “It’s become important for Syriza to remind its constituency that it still has a radical activist agenda, that it hasn’t gone soft under pressure from the bailout monitors,” says Professor Aris Hatzis, a University of Athens law professor and political commentator.
The new measures, while disruptive, appear to have been chosen with the aim of avoiding strong negative reaction from the EU and International Monetary Fund experts that oversee the reform programme, Prof Hatzis added. “They’re all in areas that aren’t exactly priorities for the creditors, at least in the short term.”
Earlier this year, the finance ministry imposed new regulations on Greek professionals, who are accused of being chronic tax evaders. These included paying a full year’s income tax in advance and making significantly higher social security contributions.
Under the provisions, the measures were backdated to 2015 in a move that would make lawyers, doctors and business consultants earning more than €75,000 a year pay more than 70 per cent of their annual income in taxes and social security. Some professionals doubt whether such high levies, seen by many as a punishment for laxity shown by previous governments, can be sustained.
“The market for legal services has shrunk significantly during the recession and so have lawyers’ pensions,” said Evangelos Kalafatis, a tax lawyer. “If these new taxes aren’t rationalised, working will no longer be attractive to many senior members of the profession.”
Greek academics say they are bitterly disappointed by a new law that reverses a 2011 reform of the university system, which passed by an overwhelming parliamentary majority. Students will again be allowed to postpone sitting final examinations indefinitely, and will also have voting rights at elections of university administrators.
The law also provides incentives for professors to spend their entire careers in one local institution, bans fee-based postgraduate courses taught in English that would attract foreign students and restores university “asylum” which prevents the police from entering a university campus.
“It’s a huge setback,” said Anna Diamantopoulou, a former EU commissioner who pushed through the law while serving as education minister. “We modernised university education and made it international . . . Now the universities will again be a battleground for domestic politics and those who can will go abroad to study.”
Eldorado Gold, facing the threat of a lengthy arbitration process with the government over permits to complete a gold-mining and processing plant at Skouries in northern Greece, warns that 1,200 jobs are at stake in an area of high unemployment. Production at Skouries was due to start this year but has now been pushed back to 2020.
“The key issue for Greece is that the benefits from these investments should have accrued already,” said George Burns, Eldorado’s chief executive.
Eldorado’s travails in Greece are often cited as a disincentive for investors worried about bureaucratic delays and the country’s tangled legal system. While Syriza lawmakers from the Skouries region claim that goldmining will cause irreversible environmental damage, the company’s proposals for the project have been upheld in 18 cases heard by expert judges at the council of state, Greece’s highest administrative court.
source:  The Financial Times Limited 2017, 29/8/2017 Kerin Hope, Athens
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Future of Halkidiki gold mines put in doubt

The Greek subsidiary of Canada’s Eldorado Gold, Hellas Gold, is set to put its investment in mining projects in Halkidiki on ice following the government’s decision to refer its dispute with the company to arbitration.

Hellas Gold announced on Wednesday that it has suspended the inauguration of the facilities at the Olympias mine in northern Greece ‘until further notice.’

The dispute between the mining firm and the government relates to the operating licenses for the Olympias and Skouries mines, which were due to be issued this January.

The arbitration process is due to begin at the end of August but it is not known how long it will take to be completed.

Meanwhile, the union representing some 2,400 people employed in the projects said that they plan to take action to protect their jobs.



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Greece to kick off arbitration process over Eldorado Gold’s project

Eldorado Gold (TSX:ELD)(NYSE:EGO) will face Greek officials in an arbitration court later this month as the country’s government sees the move as the preferred way to settle its differences with the Canadian miner.

The country’s Energy Minister George Stathakis met representatives from Eldorado’s local unit Hellas Gold in Athens on Wednesday to discuss the process and issues related to the miner’s projects in northern Greece.

According to the ministry’s statement (in Greek), the process is scheduled to begin at the end of August, though the company noted it has yet to receive formal notice of the looming mediation.

Licensing for Olympias is in the final stage, while permits for Skouries — the most contentious one — are pending.

“To be clear, we have not yet received formal notice of arbitration and permits applied for remain unissued,” Eldorado’s President and chief executive George Burns said in a statement. “We continue to evaluate all capital spending and development timelines at our projects in Greece.”

The Vancouver-based company, which already operates Stratoni mine in the country’s north, has been trying to develop the Skouries and Olympias projects for years, but local opposition and an ongoing back-and-forth with authorities have delayed progress.

The biggest differences between the company and Greek authorities revolve around testing methods applied to comply with environmental regulations at Skouries, whose final permits are still pending. Last week the company said production is now targeted for 2020, adding it had reviewed the project’s capital spending.

Licensing for the company’s Olympias project is in the final stage and Eldorado had said it expects to begin production at the gold, silver, zinc and lead mine before year-end.


source:, Cecilia Jamasmie

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Little change to Iranian oil imports in Greece

Iran’s crude oil exports in July are set to fall 7 percent from this month’s three-month high, mainly due to a decline in exports to Europe, a person with knowledge of the Middle Eastern country’s tanker loading schedule said.

In Europe, main buyer Turkey is lifting 194,000 barrels per day this month, down 27 percent from June. Italy is loading nearly 100,000 barrels per day, down from 133,000 bpd last month.

Greece and Spain are each lifting nearly 65,000 barrels per day this month, little changed from June, the source added.

[, from Reuters]

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Eldorado issues response to Greek ministry

Eldorado Gold Corp responded to a statement posted on the Greek Energy and Environment Ministry’s website on Thursday about seeking arbitration over the Canadian company’s gold mine investment, saying it has not received formal notification or any details of any arbitration proceedings.

It stated that “at this time, Eldorado’s operations and development projects are continuing to plan.”

The company underscored that it has consistently received positive decisions from Greece’s Council of State in 18 cases confirming the integrity of its permits.



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Gov’t to seek arbitration over Eldorado investment

Greece will seek arbitration to settle its differences with Canada’s Eldorado over a gold mine investment, the Energy Ministry said on Thursday.

Energy Minister Giorgos Stathakis has requested that the state’s legal advisers prepare for the arbitration process to begin, the ministry said.

Vancouver-based Eldorado is developing a gold mine project in northern Greece but differences have persisted for years with Greek authorities over testing methods applied to comply with environment regulations.

Greece says it wants to make sure that Eldorado’s Greek unit Hellas Gold, which is developing the project, respects its contractual obligations.

“The aim is to safeguard public interest by developing the region’s mineral resources in line with the existing environmental terms and standards,” the ministry said in a statement.

A ministry official told Reuters last week that the three-member arbitration panel would include a government-selected judge, an Eldorado-selected judge and a third selected by the president of Greece’s Supreme Court.

Its decisions would be binding, but could be subject to further appeal.



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Exxon confirms interest in Greece

ExxonMobil’s interest in Greek hydrocarbons was confirmed in meetings on Friday that representatives of the oil multinational had in Athens with Hellenic Petroleum (ELPE) and leading Greek government officials.

Representatives of France’s Total, which is ELPE’s partner in the concession of Block 2 in the Ionian Sea, also attended the meetings with ELPE, Deputy Prime Minister Yiannis Dragasakis and Energy Minister Giorgos Stathakis.

ExxonMobil officials had traveled to Athens to confirm their participation in the Ionian concessions through acquiring a stake in ELPE, and also to sign a strategic cooperation agreement for a joint claim on other areas of the country that could hold large quantities of hydrocarbons, with the sea off Crete being a priority.

The US oil giant appears to have already reached an agreement with ELPE and Total, and its objective on Friday was to sound out the government regarding its support for the program to utilize the country’s hydrocarbon reserves, which is vital for ExxonMobil before it advances to the agreement-signing stage.

Sources say ExxonMobil will expand its plans to creating a joint venture with ELPE – with the US firm acting as the operator – through which other possible blocks will be targeted.

source: Chryssa Laggou,

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5 economic benefits of gold mining investment in Greece

The contribution of mining to Greece’s economic growth and development has a history as old as the civilization itself. Since 1,000 B.C., Greeks have been using their mineral resources to build cities, establish trade networks and expand empires.

Revenues from the high-grade silver mines of Laurion, south of Athens in Attica, financed the emergence of Athens as a cultural, economic and military capital in the 5th Century B.C. Further north, the gold deposits of central Macedonia and Thrace funded Alexander the Great’s conquest east and the creation of an empire that, at its peak, stretched across three continents.

Today, the Olympias and Skouries mines that Eldorado Gold is developing in Halkidiki have the potential to make Greece a leading gold producer in Europe.

“The benefits these projects are estimated to generate for local communities, municipal and national governments and the Greek economy are significant ,” says Eduardo Moura, Vice President and General Manager of Eldorado’s operations in Greece. “With mine lives of approximately 25 years each, we see great potential for these projects to contribute to Greece over the long term.”

Here are five benefits Greece is already realizing from Eldorado’s investment in Halkidiki:

1. Jobs

In a country where unemployment exceeds 23%, Eldorado has created more than 2,000 new jobs in the past five years. We are proud that 87% of our employees in Greece are hired from local communities.

We now have approximately 2,400 employees and contractors, and we estimate another 3,000 direct and indirect jobs will be created when Olympias and Skouries reach full production.

Employees take a break at our Olympias project.

2. Taxes and wages

Our projects have the potential to sustain generations of Greeks in family-supporting jobs. In the past three years, we have paid approximately US$100 million in employee wages and benefits. We estimate we will pay more than US$1.5 billion in salaries and benefits over the course of our operations.

In the same timeframe, we will also generate more than US$1 billion in taxes for the Greek government.

3. Community investment

Eldorado currently contributes about €3 million annually to local infrastructure improvements, healthcare accessibility and civil services. Eldorado’s support has helped build new water supply networks, repave roads, update biological treatment plants, and rejuvenate local spaces. Eldorado also supports the Paleohori Healthcare Centre in Halkidiki. Contributions have helped modernise facilities and equipment and with other day-to-day operating costs.

We estimate Olympias and Skouries could contribute approximately US$80 million towards local community and infrastructure projects over the course of their 25 year mine lives.

Greek Orthodox Church in the village of Paleohori, Greece

4. FDI revenues

With foreign direct investment (FDI) in Greece 57% lower in 2015 versus 2014, Eldorado’s projects are a valuable source of revenue for the Country. In 2015, our investment of more than US$200 million accounted for almost 20% of FDI in Greece. (FDI in Greece in 2015 was US$1.1 billion according to the OECD).

With plans to invest over US$1 billion in the 25 years Olympias and Skouries will be in operation, Eldorado will continue to be one of the larger foreign investors in Greece.

5. Export revenues

Greek exports will also be positively impacted by the metals mined from Olympias, Skouries and Stratoni. When in full production, annual export revenues of approximately US$450 million per year (depending on metal prices) would help Greece to pay for the goods and services it currently imports. Mineral exports will also help to reduce Greece’s current trade deficit.

Stratoni processing and export facility



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Eupalinos Tunnel, a Masterpiece of Ancient Engineering Opens to Public

The Tunnel of Eupalinos, one of the most extraordinary monuments of craftmanship and construction (1,036 metres carved inside the mountain that towers over the town of Pythagorio on Samos) will be very soon accessible.

The Culture Ministry announced that the main part of the maintenance, restoration and promotion project of the Eupaline Tunnel that was approved by the Ministry, namely the tunnel in which were the clay water pipes. “The acquaintance with the Eupaline Tunnel is a life experience,” said Culture Minister Lydia Koniordou.

The Eupalinian aqueduct was designed and built in 550 BC by the engineer Eupalinos from Megara when Samos was ruled by tyrant Polycrates. It continued to supply the ancient town of Pythagorio with fresh water for 1,100 years. Eupalinos used what are now well-known principles of geometry, which were codified by Euclid several centuries later. With a length of 1,036 metres (3,399 ft), the Eupalinian subterranean aqueduct is famous today as one of the masterpieces of ancient engineering.

Eupalinos used mathematics and geometry not only to align the excavations before they met, but also to “manipulate” the alignment of the tunnel in order to avoid adverse geological conditions. Mutatis mutandis, the basic principle behind the method of Eupalinos, has been used again long after the Renaissance of Europe (early 18th century), and it is still in use in modern tunneling.

The Eupalinian aqueduct or ditch, is cited by Herodotus (Histories 3.60), without whom it would not have been discovered.

In 1992, the Eupalinian ditch was included in UNESCO’s world cultural heritage list.
(source: ana-mpa)

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Greece to sell coal-fired plants, mines as part of bailout deal

Greece will sell its coal-fired plants and coal mines equal to about 40% of its dominant power utility Public Power Corp’s (PPC) coal-fired capacity, as part of a reform deal the government reached with its foreign creditors.

Athens needs the funds urgently, as it needs to repay 7.5 billion euros in debt maturing in July.
The move aims at opening the energy market in Greece, which is second only to Germany in terms of lignite coal production in the European Union.

Athens will begin testing the waters for such sale in November, with the goal of wrapping up the sale by June 2018, a government official told Reuters.

The government needs the funds urgently, as it needs to repay 7.5 billion euros in debt maturing in July.

Coal is currently Greece’s single most important local energy source, according to World Energy Council and PPC is the nation’s largest producer of the fossil fuel, with the right to exploit 63% of known reserves.

The state-own company is also the country’s main electricity provider, producing 95% of Greece’s total electricity supply.

Cecilia Jamasmie, 2/5/2017,

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Eldorado Reports Olympias Phase II Improved Concentrate Sales Terms and Commissioning on Track

VANCOUVER, March 28, 2017 /CNW/ – Eldorado Gold Corporation, (“Eldorado” or “the Company”) today reported that it has received multiple tenders for significantly better concentrate sales terms at Olympias Phase II (“Phase II”), where wet commissioning at the project is currently underway.

Improved Concentrate Sales Terms
The Company is pleased to announce that it has received multiple tenders for significantly better concentrate sales terms for material produced beyond 2017. Under the new sales terms, gold payability rates have increased from 58% up to a maximum of 71%, which is expected to result in an increase of approximately 15,000 ounces of payable gold production per year.  Annual Phase II production is now estimated to be approximately 85,000 ounces of gold (from 72,000 ounces per year previously) plus approximately 55,000 ounces of gold equivalent production.

The construction of Phase II is substantially complete and commissioning has commenced. Addition of low grade ore to the crushing circuit is expected next week. Pre-commissioning of the main flotation plant equipment is underway and ore will be introduced in April. Deliveries of first-fill reagents, grinding media, critical and operational spares are on schedule to support second quarter pre-commercial production.

Mined ore has been moved to the surface stockpile adjacent to the crusher for commissioning of the processing facility. Underground development is well positioned to support 2017 production guidance with fourteen stopes in ore on nine different levels complete and ready for extraction. Ore mining will begin shortly in both the east and west ore zones using a drift-and-fill mining method.

Phase II Overview
Phase II involves processing ore from the underground at a rate of approximately 400,000 tonnes per year. The new processing facility includes new processing equipment within the pre-existing plant building to produce three concentrates: lead-silver, zinc and gold bearing pyrite-arsenopyrite.  In 2017, the Olympias mine is budgeted to process 267,000 tonnes of ore at grades of 9.6 grams per tonne gold, 3.4% lead, 3.4% zinc and 105 grams per tonne silver.

Paul Skayman, Eldorado’s Chief Operating Officer, commented: “After a lot of hard work by our team in Greece, we are all very excited to now be at this juncture with commissioning and we expect to declare commercial production from Olympias Phase II in the third quarter”.

About Eldorado Gold
Eldorado is a leading low cost gold producer with mining, development and exploration operations in Turkey, Greece, Romania, Serbia and Brazil.  The Company’s success to date is based on a low cost strategy, a highly skilled and dedicated workforce, safe and responsible operations, and long-term partnerships with the communities where it operates.  Eldorado’s common shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: ELD) and the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: EGO).

Cautionary Note about Forward-looking Statements and Information

Certain of the statements made and information provided in this press release are forward-looking statements or information within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and applicable Canadian securities laws. Often, these forward-looking statements and forward-looking information can be identified by the use of words such as “plans”, “expects”,  “is expected”, “budget”, “continue”, “projected”, “scheduled”, “estimates”, “forecasts”, “intends”, “anticipates”, or “believes” or the negatives thereof or variations of such words and phrases or statements that certain actions, events or results “may”, “could”, “would”, “might” or “will” be taken, occur or be achieved.

Forward-looking statements or information contained in this release include, but are not limited to the Company’s Reported Olympias Phase II Improved Concentrate Sales Terms and Commissioning on Track, including statements or information with respect to: our guidance and outlook, including expected production, projected cash cost, our expectation as to our future financial and operating performance, including estimated cash costs, expected metallurgical recoveries, gold price outlook and our strategy, plans and goals, including our proposed development, construction, permitting and operating plans and priorities, and related timelines.

Forward-looking statements and forward-looking information by their nature are based on assumptions and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements or information. 

We have made certain assumptions about the forward-looking statements and information, including assumptions about the geopolitical, economic, permitting and legal climate that we operate in; the future price of gold and other commodities; exchange rates; anticipated costs and expenses; production, mineral reserves and resources and metallurgical recoveries, the impact of acquisitions, dispositions, suspensions or delays on our business and the ability to achieve our goals.  In particular, except where otherwise stated, we have assumed a continuation of existing business operations on substantially the same basis as exists at the time of this release.

Even though our management believes that the assumptions made and the expectations represented by such statements or information are reasonable, there can be no assurance that the forward-looking statement or information will prove to be accurate. Many assumptions may be difficult to predict and are beyond our control.  

Furthermore, should one or more of the risks, uncertainties or other factors materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those described in forward-looking statements or information.  These risks, uncertainties and other factors include, among others, the following:  geopolitical and economic climate (global and local), risks related to mineral tenure and permits; gold and other metal price volatility; mining operational and development risk; foreign country operational risks; risks of sovereign investment; regulatory environment and restrictions, including environmental regulatory restrictions and liability; discrepancies between actual and estimated production, mineral reserves and resources and metallurgical recoveries; risks related to impact of the sale of our Chinese assets on the Company’s operations; additional funding requirements; currency fluctuations; litigation risks; community and non-governmental organization actions; speculative nature of gold exploration; dilution; share price volatility; competition; loss of key employees; and defective title to mineral claims or property, as well as those factors discussed in the sections entitled “Forward-Looking Statements” and “Risk factors in our business” in the Company’s  most recent Annual Information Form & Form 40-F. The reader is directed to carefully review the detailed risk discussion in our most recent Annual Information Form filed on SEDAR under our Company name, which discussion is incorporated by reference in this release, for a fuller understanding of the risks and uncertainties that affect the Company’s business and operations.

There can be no assurance that forward-looking statements or information will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements.  Accordingly, you should not place undue reliance on the forward-looking statements or information contained herein.  Except as required by law, we do not expect to update forward-looking statements and information continually as conditions change and you are referred to the full discussion of the Company’s business contained in the Company’s reports filed with the securities regulatory authorities in Canada and the U.S.

Except as otherwise noted, scientific and technical information contained in this press release was reviewed and approved by Paul Skayman, FAusIMM, Chief Operating Officer for Eldorado Gold Corporation, and a “qualified person” as defined by Canadian Securities Administrators’ National Instrument 43-101 – Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects (“NI 43-101”).

SOURCE Eldorado Gold Corporation

Mar 28, 2017

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The Ancient Mines of Samos

In Mytilene, one of the largest villages in Samos, in an area called Koutsodontis, there are 45 caves in the hillside. These are all entrances to Ancient Mines. The lowest caves are 147 meters above sea level, and visitors can enjoy a beautiful view of the valley around Chora when they reach them.

11905402_1166028026746697_8373136490076962702_nAll the entrances are supported by man-made carved columns which bear witness to the accuracy of the studies made before work began, the well-planned layout and the careful construction of each and every entrance in such a way as to keep the mountain above the entrances stable.

For thousands of years, time, wind and rain have ravaged these ancient structures and washed the traces and the sweat of humanity from the carved faces of the columns. So today they stand to be admired, both as works of art and feats of engineering.

Inside one of these entrances there is a hole which leads into the hillside. Explorers have found 8 levels of mining tunnels, all of which are also supported by columns. They also measured the maximum depth as being 70 meters. All the levels are 1 km long.

It is very probable that the history of this place hides many more surprises for us to discover. However there are already reliable reports about its use in the past.

2According to Herman Kienast, an architect with the German Archaeological Institute, former supervisor of the archaeological excavations at the Temple of Hera, and expert on the Tunnel of Eupalinos (or Eupalion Aqueduct), building materials for the construction of the great Temple of Hera and for other buildings in the sanctum area and in the ancient city of Samos (nowadays Pythagorion) were mined here in ancient times.

The engraved pieces of rock which are still visible on the floor of the mine today are undisputed evidence of this mining activity.

The “Samiaka” newspaper also reported that during the 1821 Greek War of Independence this place functioned as a “Nitrate Mine” where a monk named Ignatius manufactured gunpowder using nitrates. Unfortunately, in modern times, the mine has not received attention commensurate with its importance and historical value.

However, it is significant that since 2002 the Greek Ministry of Culture has, following the advice of the Greek Central Archaeological Council, conducted topographic surveys, measurements, and surface research on the area surrounding the ​​quarries. These are being carried out under the supervision of Maria Viglaki-Sofianou, an archaeologist from the 21st Ephorate of Prehistoric and Classic Antiquities, with the cooperation of the architect, Ioannis Mitsoulis (an employee of the same Ephorate). The architect Herman Kienast also takes part in the research on behalf of the German Archaeological Institute.

During recent years, fires destroyed the surrounding forest which had acted as a “protective shield” for the site by stabilising the ground. Today, erosion has affected the soil, and if action is not taken there is a danger that the site will be destroyed.

Recently, the Prefecture and the Municipality of Pythagorion have attempted to clean up the surrounding area. This effort was supported by the Speleological Association of Samos “EUPALINOS”.

This archaeological site, which is unique on a global scale in terms of how deep it reaches into the mountain and its architecture, “is crying out” for us to take an interest in it, to save it and to promote it.

Following a study on landscaping the site made by the Greek Ministry of Culture, all 45 entrances to the quarries can now be visited by tourists. They have been linked by an impressive path which starts from the top of the hill and passes in front of all the entrances until it reaches the north entrance of the Tunnel of Eupalinos and the Springs of Agiadon, the water of which was channelled through the tunnel.

If action taken by the local authorities was coordinated with special studies and was integrated into relevant European programmes, it would be possible to undertake work which would allow visitors to go inside all 45 caves, thereby highlighting another remarkable ancient work of Samos. Speleological Association of Samos “EUPALINOS”

[ΠΗΓΗ:,,, photographs Christos Vasileias, Ιpponax Apollodoros]

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A.Kefalas: €1 bn. of exports and 84,000 jobs in the extractive industry

The sector of extractive-metallurgical industry is a pillar of the regional economy and one of the greatest employers in the country, with international presence and 84,000 employees, as it contributes 3.4% of the country’s GDP with an annual turnover of 6.2 billion euros. 80% of the production is exported, while the value of these exports is over 1 billion euros per year. The great contribution of the mining companies to the Greek Periphery, has been described yesterday in a meeting with journalists by the President of the Association of Mining Companies Mr. Athanassios Kefalas. As he mentioned, the activities of the extractive sector have a significant positive impact on the economy of Attica too, by contributing approximately 2.1 billion euros. The reason for this is that the headquarters and offices of most of the companies of the sector are located in Attica.

The President of the Association of Mining Companies made a particular reference in his speech to the inhibiting factors that hinder the growth of the extractive sector and constitute a barrier. Among others were mentioned “the cumbersome licensing process, both for existing activities and for new investments, bureaucracy, the outdated quarrying law, the social reactions due to the great fear of environmental degradation in combination with the non existence of effective controls, the lack of stable tax and labor legislative framework, and above all the insecurity regarding justice”.

Mr. Kefalas, being invited to comment on the negative attitude of the Greek state in the case of Hellas Gold, argued that there is a bad past, with the licenses creating rivalry and social upheaval. “It is no accident that, when the licensing of a facility begins, the first thing they ask us is what is the opinion of the mayor and of the local community ” he mentioned, and pointed out that gold is not rings and bracelets, but it consists an industrial product that is used by manufactures of mobile (cell) phones, medical instruments (tomography scanners) etc. Mr. Kefalas tried to disprove the view that industries are destroying natural wealth and are harmful to the environment, by pointing out that on the island of Milos, where the facilities of the former S&B are located, where he was a senior employee and where he remains after the strategic merging with the French company Imerys, 63,000 square meters of land will be turned into vineyards, on the initiative of the company. Regarding the effect of the crisis in the sector, he declared that there is no impact on the turnover.

However it is observed that there is an impact on the competitiveness of the Greek companies, due, for example, to overtaxation.

Citing a study of the Foundation for Economic and Industrial Research, he pointed out that next to Attica, the contribution of the sector is quite significant in Central Macedonia too, and amounts to approximately 1 billion euros. Furthermore, 12% of the added value that is created in the Region of Sterea Ellada (740 million euros) is attributed to the extractive sector. This is the case respectively, for approximately 4% of the added value that is created in the Regions of Eastern Macedonia–Thrace (300 million euros), Western Macedonia (130 million euros) and Thessaly (270 million euros), as well as for approximately 3% of the added value that is created in the Region of South Aegean (160 million euros). The contribution of the extractive industry to the added value that is produced in Central Macedonia is also quite important (approximately 500 million euros or approximately 2.2% of the added value of the Region).

Mr. Kefalas referred to the regional effects of the extractive industry on employment which are today particularly important, arguing that in the last years it has been observed that it also contributes to the internal migration, as more and more young people are moving to islands and areas where respective activities take place., By Marianna Tzanne, 07/06/2016

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Eldorado Gold: Skouries Technical Study approved, construction to recommence

VANCOUVER, May 9, 2016 /CNW/ – Eldorado Gold Corporation (“Eldorado” or the “Company”) confirms that Hellas Gold S.A., a Greek subsidiary of Eldorado, has received from Greece’s Ministry of Energy and Environment (The “Ministry”) the approval of the updated Technical Study for the Skouries Project in Halkidiki, Northern Greece. The approval of the Technical Study enables Hellas Gold to recommence construction activities at the Skouries Project site, which were suspended in January of this year (see news release dated January 11, 2016). Paul Wright, President and Chief Executive Officer of Eldorado, commented: “We are all very pleased with the receipt of this approval and greatly encouraged by the ongoing interaction between Hellas Gold and the Ministry and its technical services. This constructive engagement has contributed to other recent approvals including the Skouries Building Permit (February 2016), and the Olympias Installation Permit (March 2016). I believe there now exists a greatly improved shared understanding, appreciation and alignment between the Company and the Ministry in regards to the substantial benefits to be gained by the Greek society and economy through the collaborative responsible development of mineral resources in Greece. We look forward to working together with the Ministry to advance the Skouries and Olympias Projects for the benefit of all stakeholders.”

source:, May 09, 2016

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Greek Government Grants Eldorado Gold Permit for Olympias Mine

The Greek government has granted Hellas Gold, a subsidiary of Canada’s Eldorado Gold, a license for the Olympias mine in northern Greece.

The company made the announcement on Tuesday, after Greece’s Environment and Energy Ministry gave the mining company the long-awaited permit.

“The project can now continue so that from the first quarter of 2017 the ore that will be produced at the mine will be processed at the Olympias facility,” Hellas Gold said in a statement.

Greece’s government had revoked Eldorado’s permit in August citing environmental concerns, the Council of State, the country’s top administrative court, annulled the government’s decision in January.

The Canadian company has been in acrimonious dispute with Environment and Energy Minister Panos Skourletis, who in January suspended work at its Skouries gold mine, one of the four projects the company has in Greece.

The permit allows Eldorado to set up a processing plant in Olympias, which is crucial for the development of the mine.

The company has allocated 155 million dollars, or about two-thirds of its total development budget for 2016, to develop the Olympias project.

Currently, the company employs 2,000 workers in an area with an unemployment rate above 30 percent.

source:, By Philip Chrysopoulos

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Eldorado confirms commitment to its investment in Greece

Eldorado Gold has said it is determined to stick to its investment in Greece in spite of its decision to write down its Greek assets.

“Based on our long-term planning, we remain committed to the investment and the assets of the company in Greece and the expected benefits for the company’s shareholders,” Eldorado’s chief executive officer, Paul Wright, stated in the context of the announcement of the firm’s provisional financial results for 2015 and the estimates for 2016 on Monday.

Sources of subsidiary Hellenic Gold told Kathimerini that the asset write-down does not mean the parent company wishes to leave Greece.

source:, 27/01/2016

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