Thursday, March 19 2020 15:55
Alina Hovhannisyan

Lydian Armenia accuses government of lack of grounds for new phase of  questions on Amulsar project 

Lydian Armenia accuses government of lack of grounds for new phase of  questions on Amulsar project 

ArmInfo. The government has no justifiable grounds for demanding the start of a new stage of questions to Lydian on the Amulsar project

No such requirement was imposed on any other of the companies  operating in Armenia. This is stated in the message of Lydian  Armenia, published as a response to the statement of Prime Minister  of the Republic of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan of March 12, in which he  spoke about the intention of the RA government to initiate a new  stage of questions to Lydian, including 154 questions.

According to the source, over the past 21 months, Lydian has suffered  damage exceeding $ 119 million, wasting most of its time and  resources on at least 3 comprehensive environmental audits and  providing answers to the countless questions raised during the  examinations.

"The company gave comprehensive answers to questions regarding the  environmental impact of the Amulsar program, which cannot be said  about numerous questions that have not yet received answers regarding  actions and inaction of the government regarding Lydian and the  Amulsar project, "the company said in a statement. The report noted  that the Government of Armenia should ensure fair and equal  competitive conditions with respect to Lydian, the rule of law and  protect not only the legal rights of the company and its investors,  but also those thousands of Armenian citizens who were severely  affected by the illegal blockade of roads leading to Amulsar, and as  a result of this long lawlessness continue to bear enormous social  and economic difficulties.

To recall, Lydian Armenia is a subsidiary of the British offshore  Lydian International. The total cost of the Amulsar project is $ 370  million. The field's life is 10 years and 4 months, with an average  of 200 thousand ounces of gold being mined annually. Amulsar field is  the second largest reserve in Armenia. According to the company, the  deposit contains about 73733 kg of gold with an average grade of 0.78  g per ton, as well as 294.367 tons of silver with an average grade  9.29 g per ton. It is located in the south-east of the country, 13 km  from the spa town of Jermuk, between the rivers Arpa and Vorotan.

It should be noted that despite Lydian's assurances that about $ 300  million has already been invested in the Amulsar gold deposit  development project, environmentalists do not share the government's  enthusiasm about the attractiveness of the mine's exploitation plan.  Environmentalists fear that the exploitation of the field, during  which sodium cyanide will be used, may lead to the oxidation of water  in rivers. Contaminated waters will become unsuitable for drinking  and irrigation and may cause irreparable harm to the mineral springs  of Jermuk and the ecosystem of Sevan.

Since the end of 2018, the road to the field has been blocked by  environmental activists. The company recently announced that it is  launching a delisting process for its shares that are listed on the  Toronto Stock Exchange.

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