MANILA, Oct 30 (Reuters) - The Philippines said on Friday it may soon allow development of the $2 billion King-King copper-gold project to proceed in the country’s southern mining province of Compostela Valley.
A move to issue a “notice to proceed” would mark the first time the country has issued a permit to develop a new mine since 2012, pending legislation to increase the government’s share of mining revenues.
“We may be able to approve the DMPF (by) mid-November,” Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) Director Leo Jasareno said, referring to the developer’s Declaration of Mining Project Feasibility.
He was speaking at an industry forum organised by the American Chamber of Commerce.
The open-pit mine could have an annual output of 138 million pounds of copper, about half a million ounces of silver, and more than 236,000 ounces of gold over a period of 22 years.
The DMPF’s approval means the Filipino-owned Nationwide Development Corporation (Nadecor), which holds the mining rights over King-King, can proceed to the development stage, he said.
Toronto-listed St Augustine Gold & Copper Ltd also has a stake in the project.
King-King is one of several major Philippine mining projects that are unaffected by a moratorium on approvals for new production because they were already in advanced stage before the ban took effect. (Reporting by Erik dela Cruz; Editing by Ed Davies)