Saturday, July 15, 2017

Romania hits Gabriel Resources with $9m 'retaliatory' tax bill over gold mine

Romania has served Gabriel Resources with a $8.6m tax bill days after the company filed a $4.4bn compensation claim over a stalled project in the country. Gabriel Resources tried for more than 18 years to get necessary permits for an opencast mine to extract Europe’s largest gold deposits from beneath the village of Roșia Montană in the Apuseni mountains.
The project was halted in 2013 after tens of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets for three weeks of mass protests.
The government withdrew its support in 2014 and in 2017 submitted the village and its surrounding area for inclusion on Unesco’s World Heritage list, killing off the mine.

Opening the mine would have involved use of cyanide and would have turned a nearby valley into a tailings dam holding up to 250 million tons of cyanide-laced waste from the gold leaching. It would also have destroyed four mountain peaks, nearby villages, and a series of 1,900-year-old Roman mining galleries.