Monday, March 9, 2009

Barrick CEO vists Argentina for secret meetings

FEB 27 2009

The number one came to define Barrick Pascua Lama
With your new suit CEO, Aaron Regent was almost 4 hours together with Governor José Luis Gioja. A strong gesture to begin with.
Never had fallen to South America from the base of operations in Toronto. The plane left the company yesterday to Aaron Regent (43), highest worldwide Barrick, early in San Juan. Had a long and secret reunion with Governor Gioja and returned to Vancouver. Why? Protocol is said he came to present his compliments, but nobody makes such a journey and in the midst of a heavy silence, for that. Industry sources indicated that they gave the last stitch to the announcement of the start of operations for the largest gold mine in South America, whose decision to start is almost taken.

At least the trip was a lightning strong signal that things are going well and it was well beyond both the government and from the company, although neither the governor nor the executive of the company referred the matter in public.

At 12.45 the delegation of Barrick came to Government House in three cars Remise, so as not to attract attention. For the first time the faces were the new President and CEO of Barrick, Aaron Regent, and the governor José Luis Gioja.

In the morning the reunion was handled with extreme secrecy, and even had different versions concerning the timetable, the government and from Barrick repeatedly that he wanted him to share media, but had two early in guarding Government House and were warned that they could not come to mingle with the Regent, which Gioja not talk and could not bring the photographers.

Positioned at the side of the courtyard, in the governor's private, there were 15.40 when they saw the departure of men and Barrick Gioja all very smiling, there were greetings at the door and there he took photos that were published today . That until a governor's secretary came to ask the guards not to let police take pictures of the print media who were there.

Both hermeticism could not be simple greetings protocol, as indicated by the afternoon the government releases and expressions of the people of Barrick.

From Canada, Regent came to San Juan only to wind up with issues related to Gioja Pascua Lama. Hence the importance of meeting and the mystique that surrounded him. A fact no less important was the presence at the reunion of the project manager Ron Kettles.

High-level sources said that this was the main reason why the couple came to see Regent Gioja. According to what transpired, were spinning fine together to define the official announcement of the start of Pascua Lama, which would be next April, to start construction in September. The question is whether it will be in San Juan and Buenos Aires, in this case the presence of President Cristina Kirchner, or perhaps in concert in Chile and Argentina.

It seems that this time would be given all the conditions for the project to start next September, when waiting on the same date in 2007 and 2008 but was delayed by the delay of permits and sectoral tax definitions.

It is not just what is at stake, it is the largest gold exploration projects in South America with an investment of more than 3,000 million dollars, although this figure will be updated by the mining in the third quarter.

Besides the governor attended the reunion, the Secretary of Mines of the Province, Felipe Saavedra, and in addition to Barrick and its CEO said Ron Kettles, Kelvin Dusniski, Julio Hernan Claudeville and Zabala.

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