Colombia fixes moorland boundaries affecting gold miners

Fri Dec 19, 2014 12:31pm EST
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BOGOTA Dec 19 (Reuters) - Colombia's Environment Ministry announced it had fixed the boundaries of an ecologically delicate moorland in the country's northeast, a decision that would affect two of three miners with a license to explore or develop mining there.

Environment Minister Gabriel Vallejo said 100,000 hectares of land in the area known as the Paramos would be "totally protected" by the new regulation whose development in the last couple of years had left the viability of mining projects there uncertain.

"There are three companies. One of them is outside of the Paramos. The other two ... it is not up to me to see if they are going to continue," Vallejo said.

One of the projects is owned by Canadian-listed miner Eco Oro. A spokesman said the company had no immediate comment to make while it studied the new boundaries but said it would issue a statement later in the day.

Trading in the company's shares was extremely volatile on Wednesday and Thursday and was suspended by the regulator, pending the announcement. (Reporting by Peter Murphy; editing by Gunna Dickson)