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 Friday, March 10 2023 15:13
Marianna Mkrtchyan

MPG: More than 50% of respondents in Armenia are not against  development of Amulsar mine

MPG: More than 50% of respondents in Armenia are not against  development of Amulsar mine

ArmInfo. More than 50% of the respondents in Armenia are not against the development of the Amulsar  gold mine. This is evidenced by the "Mountain of Shame" survey data of the MPG consulting company.

So, to clarify how they relate to the government's decision to start  developing the mine, 25% of the respondents answered positively,  while in 2019 they were 16%, another 31.3% of the respondents  answered - rather positively (26.7% - in 2019). 16.8% of respondents  were categorically against it (20.8% - in 2019), 14.2% of the  respondents answered- rather against (19.1% - in 2019). Another 12.5%  of respondents found it difficult to answer this question. In 2019,  17.5% thought so.

It should be noted that the survey was conducted through telephone  calls to residents of the Republic of Armenia in the period from  February 25-28 this year, the sample size was 1100, the sample error  was +/- 3%.  In 2011, MPG became the official representative in  Armenia of the Gallup International Association, one of the most  prestigious and independent public opinion research organizations in  the world. Since 2003, MPG, working in the sociological and marketing  research market, has implemented more than 800 projects of various  sizes.

On February 22, the RA government, Lydian Armenia CJSC and the  Eurasian Development Bank signed a memorandum of understanding, which  marked the restart of the development of the Amulsar mine project.   As part of the memorandum, $150 million will be attracted, of which  $100 million will be EDB credit funds, $50 million will be provided  by a local bank, and an additional $100 million will be invested  outside the agreement by shareholders. As part of the deal, the  Armenian government will receive a 12.5% stake in the company, for  which it will pay nothing, but will instead insure the deal against  certain risks.

Since the end of 2018, the Amulsar gold mine has been stopped by  environmental activists. The government was never able to orient  itself about the resumption of the construction of the mine and work  on it had to be suspended. In March 2022, Minister of Economy of  Armenia Vagan Kerobyan noted that if nothing interferes, the work of  the Amulsar gold mine will be resumed, referring to the department's  program of measures, which contains a provision on solving the  Amulsar problem. Previously, before the change of beneficiaries,  Lydian Armenia was a subsidiary of the British offshore Lydian  International, which placed shares on the Toronto Stock Exchange.  Then the company went through the process of delisting. As a result  of the restructuring, the full stake in the company was transferred  to the newly established Canadian-American Lydian Canada Ventures,  the beneficiaries of which are the American Orion Mine Finance and  the Canadian Osisko Gold Royalties. The total cost of the Amulsar  project is $370 million. The life of the mineis 10 years and 4  months, while it is planned to produce an average of 200 thousand  ounces of gold annually. The field is the second largest in Armenia.   According to the company, the mine contains about 73,733 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 of 9.29 g per ton. It is located in the  south-east of the country, 13 km from the resort town of Jermuk, in  the interfluve of the Arpa and Vorotan rivers. 

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