Sept 9 Centerra Gold Inc said it entered
into an understanding with the Central Asian state of Kyrgyzstan
that could pave the way for joint ownership of the country's
Toronto-listed Centerra said Kyrgyz state gold company,
Kyrgyzaltyn JSC, would swap its 32.7 percent stake in Centerra
for a 50 percent interest in a joint venture that would own the
Kumtor Project. Centerra would also receive $100 million.
Centerra has been under pressure to redraw an agreement
struck in 2009 to operate the Kumtor mine, hidden high in the
Tien Shan mountains. A state commission had said the company
was paying too little to run the mine and accused it of damaging
A number of agreements entered in 2009 by the miner and the
government would remain in effect, including the one on tax
regime, according to terms of the non-binding memorandum of
Centerra would remain operator of the project and
Kyrgyzaltyn would receive six million warrants to acquire
Centerra shares at an exercise price of C$10. The warrants would
be exercisable for two years.
All state agency environmental claims against the project
would be resolved prior to the restructuring, Centerra said.