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Geraldton mine project at a standstill

Centerra Gold rejects Premier Gold Mines’ buy-out offer
Hardrock Gold Mines

Premier Gold Mine’s US$205 million offer to buy out its contentious northwestern Ontario mine development partner has been rejected by Centerra Gold.

The two companies remain 50/50 joint venture partners in Greenstone Gold Mines, the spinoff company established to construct the Hardrock open-pit mine project, south of Geraldton. The property is 275 kilometres northeast of Thunder Bay.

The two companies clashed last year over whether the Hardrock Project had reached the “feasibility study” stage.

Premier made its offer in late March to avoid litigation with Centerra. Premier also added there was an undisclosed company ready to acquire Centerra’s stake and take the project forward.

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In an April 8 statement, Thunder Bay-based Premier chalks up Centerra’s refusal as their partner still seeing value in the project.

“Centerra’s decision not to accept our offer confirms that Centerra recognizes the substantial value of the Hardrock Project and is inconsistent with its refusal to make a Positive Feasibility Decision in connection with the Project”, said Ewan Downie, Premier’s president and CEO.

Premier said it will continue to take all steps necessary to protect its interest in the project.

Premier contends that Hardrock is “shovel ready” with both federal and provincial environmental assessment approvals, an updated mine closure plan filed, and signed relationship agreements with nearby First Nations.

Toronto-based Centerra is an international gold and copper with operations in British Columbia, Turkey and the Kyrgyz Republic (Kyrgyzstan) in central Asia.

Premier is a gold miner and exploration company with operations and properties in northwestern Ontario, Nevada and Mexico.