UPDATE 2-Eldorado CEO says mining halt in Greece will cost 600 jobs

Tue Jan 12, 2016 10:00am EST
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(Adds details from conference call)

ATHENS Jan 12 (Reuters) - Canadian miner Eldorado Gold Corp expects the suspension of much of its mine construction and development activity in Greece after a confrontation with the government to cost more than 600 jobs, its chief executive said on Tuesday.

The Vancouver-based miner had to resort to Greece's top administrative court to annul a government decision that revoked a mining permit in northern Greece on environmental concerns.

A majority of judges of Greece's top administrative court ruled in favour of Eldorado in November, but the official decision is still pending.

Eldorado's shares were down 18 percent at C$3.58 in early trading in Toronto on Tuesday.

The government revoked Eldorado's permit in August, disputing the miner's tests for a so-called flash-melting method to ensure against environmental damage.

"Our investment is treated as a political toy, we never anticipated this," CEO Paul Wright said in Athens. "Failure to receive timely licenses and permits has proved very expensive.

"It's bad for Greece because it is seen as such from off-shore," he said.

Eldorado said on Monday it would suspend construction at the Skouries project and warned it would do the same at its Olympias project if it did not receive a permit by the end of March.   Continued...