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Thursday, 20 February 2020

Centamin to consider bidding on the Mineral Resources Authority’s upcoming tender

INVESTMENT WATCH- Centamin “prepared” to invest more in Egypt’s mining, waiting on details of int’l gold tender: Centamin is waiting on more details on the Mineral Resources Authority’s upcoming international gold exploration and mining tender before deciding whether or not to participate, but is “prepared” to invest more in Egypt’s gold mining industry, Chairman Josef El Raghy tells Youm7. The government is set to issue the international tender for areas in the Eastern Desert next month, which will be the first tender since the Mineral Resources Act was amended last year and the first for gold exploration since 2017.

Centamin, which is currently the only company producing gold in Egypt, already pledged USD 190 mn in investments this year to develop its Sukari mine. The London-listed gold miner, which last month rejected a takeover bid by Canadian firm Endeavour, will spend USD 95 mn on revamping the site, USD 45 mn on a new waste management facility, and USD 50 mn on a 30 MW solar facility.

The tender has also drawn interest from other industry players, particularly following amendments to the Mineral Resources Act: Naguib Sawiris said earlier this week that he is in talks with the government to participate in the tender, although it remains unclear which company he is involved with is holding the talks. Sawiris is chairman of La Mancha, the largest shareholder in Endeavour Mining. He also praised the executive regulations to the amended Mineral Resources Act, which has allowed for the issuance of new gold exploration tenders and requires companies to pay a minimum royalty of 5% of annual production, with the cap set at 10% for mineral ores and 20% for other resources.

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