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Argentina court extends Barrick Gold's Veladero mine suspension

Based on a report submitted by mining police in Argentina's San Juan province, Judge Pablo Oritja ruled that Barrick Gold Corp.'s Veladero mine would remain suspended, as the repairs were insufficient to resume operations, Reuters wrote Sept. 30.

The court extended the temporary suspension until the company completes additional work at the mine. Operations were suspended at Veladero on Sept. 15 after the company confirmed that a new cyanide spill had occurred Sept. 8 at its Argentinian gold mine.

Mining police found that the company had not installed security cameras and sensors as required, according to a state news agency Telam.

Barrick said the same day that it had completed "critical" work at the mine required by the authorities for the reopening of the mine and was awaiting a final resolution of the matter.

Company spokesman Andy Lloyd said suspension of production at Veladero is not expected to cause the company to miss the consolidated production guidance for the year.

Earlier, Reuters reported Barrick President Kelvin Dushnisky as saying that, if the mine restarts within the two-week time frame as expected, the suspension would not have any material impact on the mine's production guidance.

The gold major noted that the authorities suggested work in seven areas, including maintenance of the exterior perimeter of the leach pad liner and raising the exterior bank, over which the processing solution flowed.

Lloyd added that the company will finalize the estimate related to costs of the repairs or suspension after the mine resumes operation.