March 18, 2011 / 12:04 AM / 8 years ago

UPDATE 1-Colombia says Greystar withdraws environment request

* Unclear if project was terminated or will be redesigned

* Gold mine project had faced opposition over environment (Adds details throughout)

BOGOTA, March 17 (Reuters) - Canada’s Greystar Resources GSL.TO has told Colombia it would withdraw environmental and technical permit requests for the Angostura gold project, Colombia’s energy minister said on Thursday.

Greystar has faced opposition from local Colombian authorities, the country’s inspector general and environmental groups, which call its Angostura project a threat to a delicate Andean ecosystem.

“I received a call from the president and CEO of that company ... who just told me that they have decided to withdraw the technical license request ... and also the environmental license request,” Energy Minister Carlos Rodado said in a statement posted on the presidency’s website.

It was not clear if the company was ending the project or whether it would redesign or reapply due to environmental complaints.

The company was not immediately available for comment.

Critics have said the mine would affect Santurban, a so-called “paramo” area believed to be the source of rivers and streams that supply water to 2.2 million inhabitants in Colombia.

Colombia, once dismissed as a failing state mired in drug violence, is enjoying a resurgence in oil and mining investment as its years-long guerrilla war wanes and companies return to explore in areas that used to be considered too dangerous. (Reporting by Luis Jaime Acosta and Jack Kimball)

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