UPDATE 2-Kyrgyzstan OKs Centerra Gold's 2014 mine plan to avoid shutdown

Wed Jun 11, 2014 2:06pm EDT
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(Adds comment from Centerra, stock price movement)

By Olga Dzyubenko

BISHKEK, June 11 (Reuters) - The government of Kyrgyzstan said on Wednesday it had approved Centerra Gold's mine plan for 2014, rushing to meet a deadline set by the Canadian investor, which had threatened to shut operations at the country's largest gold deposit.

"We have signed a relevant order. The company receives the right to continue its work," Valery Dil, Kyrgyzstan's deputy prime minister in charge of economy and investment, told Reuters.

"We chose the most rational option ... to avoid the mothballing of the company's facilities and to avert unpredictable consequences for the economy and ecology."

But in a statement released shortly after midday on Wednesday, Toronto-based Centerra Gold said it did not yet have official approval for the mine plan in hand.

"The company reiterates ... that absent the receipt of such approvals by the close of business on (Friday) June 13, 2014, it intends to begin an orderly shutdown of operations at the Kumtor project," Centerra said.

Centerra's stock jumped 6.4 percent to trade at C$4.33 on the Toronto Stock Exchange, ahead of its peers but off an earlier high of C$4.59.

Centerra has until Aug. 1 to coordinate its planned work at the Davydov Glacier at the site of its operations in the Tien Shan mountains, and register all the explored mineral reserves of its licence area, the Kyrgyz geology and mineral resources agency said.   Continued...