NAGUIB Sawiris, the telecoms mogul-turned-gold bull, said he was interested in participating in Egypt’s gold industry after the North African country started discussions with companies about potential licence auctions.
Sawiris said in an interview with Bloomberg News that the Egyptian government had “… already started talks with us as well as other companies to promote the new tender”. This is in terms of handing out new licences following a decision by the government to lower royalties and drop a regulation that mining firms form a joint venture with it.
“We are willing to participate in any area that could be promising,” Sawiris told Bloomberg News. He didn’t specify which of the firms he’s involved with would submit bids.
Sawiris is invested in Endeavour Mining via his La Mancha Investments company as well as Golden Star Resources and Evolution Mining. Endeavour recently published details of a possible merger with Centamin, a company that operates the Sukari gold mine in Egypt. Centamin rejected the proposal arguing that the all-share offer undervalued it.
Ramping up gold output would be a future source of growth for the Egyptian economy, which is emerging from a sweeping International Monetary Fund-backed reform program, said Bloomberg News.
“The new regulations are more favourable and more realistic and would attract foreign investments to the sector,” said Sawiris. The government is planning a roadshow in Canada next month and will promote the new opportunities at a global mining conference, said Bloomberg News.
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