On Monday September 11, the Vancouver-based firm, and Greece’s largest foreign investor, had said that it will suspend all its operations in Greece by September 22, citing years-long permit delays and a lack of information on an arbitration process to settle differences with authorities.
Greek media say that the Canadian company seems determined to go through with its threat to suspend its investment in the mine, while in the process leaving around 520 people who work there, out of a job.
The company blames the SYRIZA government for playing delaying tactics.
Eldorado Gold officials pointed out that recourse to arbitration does not concern the pending of the Skouries license, but rather of the Metallurgical Plant that is to be constructed in the small town of Stratoni; which is also in the Greek region of Chalkidiki.
“The government needs to demonstrate that it really wants to cooperate and promote the investment, rather than trying to keep the company hostage,” an Eldorado Gold official said.
Last week Greek Environment Minister Giorgos Stathakis issued all pending permits for the company’s Olympias project.
However, Eldorado is still waiting for permits for its Skouries project; the main bone of contention between the company and Greek authorities.
A statement from the company said that, “Upon receipt of the required Skouries permit and the Greek government being willing to engage with us in constructive discussions, the company will then be in a position to re-assess its investment options in Greece.”.