VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Feb. 05, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Eldorado Gold Corporation ("Eldorado" or "the Company") is pleased to announce its wholly-owned subsidiary, Hellas Gold S.A. has entered into an amended Investment Agreement (the "Agreement") with the Hellenic Republic to govern the further development, construction and operation of the Skouries, Olympias and Stratoni/Mavres Petres mines and facilities in northern Greece (collectively the "Kassandra Mines"). The Agreement amends the 2004 Transfer Agreement between Hellas Gold S.A. and the Hellenic Republic, and provides a modernised legal and financial framework to allow for the advancement of Eldorado's investment in the Kassandra Mines.
The Agreement is mutually beneficial to Eldorado and the Hellenic Republic. For Eldorado, it provides investor protection mechanisms including a permitting framework similar to other large-scale foreign investment agreements in Greece. For the Hellenic Republic, it provides enhanced fiscal revenues, environmental benefits, and community development opportunities.
The Agreement includes an optimized Investment Plan for the Kassandra Mines which will allow for:
- Completion of construction at Skouries and transition of the project into production;1
- Expansion of Olympias to 650,000 tonnes per annum;2
- Upgrades to the port facilities at Stratoni to allow for bulk shipment of concentrates;2
- Further investment in exploration at Mavres Petres-Stratoni; and
- Continued study of on-site gold processing methods.
The Agreement will be formally submitted to the Greek Parliament for ratification, with a vote expected to take place in an upcoming parliamentary session. The Agreement takes effect once published in the Greek Government Gazette, which follows parliamentary ratification.
"Today is a major milestone, marking a new beginning for the Kassandra Mines and for Eldorado Gold in Greece," said George Burns, President and CEO. "This agreement is the culmination of dedicated, determined efforts and reflects a true desire from both parties to deliver a commercial framework that can realize the potential of the Kassandra Mines for all stakeholders. Both Olympias and Skouries have the potential to be tier-one assets that, when combined with the rest of our portfolio, will be transformational for Eldorado.
"We now have a modernized investment agreement that will provide a stable, commercial path for Eldorado in Greece, as well as a strong precedent for future investment in the country once ratified by the Greek Parliament. Together, we are building a positive legacy for generations to come as we continue to commit to operating responsibly and with care for local communities and the environment."
Key Benefits of the Agreement
- Investor protection mechanisms, similar to other large-scale foreign investment agreements in Greece;
- A permitting framework allowing for a clear path to production and stable operations;
- Increased fiscal revenues for all levels of government, including a 10% increase in royalty rates for all contained metals3;
- Enhanced opportunities for local communities, including the creation of approximately 3,000 jobs and an $80 million commitment to community projects over the life of the mines; and
- Reduced environmental footprint through the use of best-available techniques (BAT) at the EU level, as well as global best practices, such as dry-stack tailings, improved water management systems and other design and monitoring improvements.