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Other meetings led to cancellation of Sitharamans Colombo Visit

Contrary to the impression in Sri Lanka, Sitharaman’s cancelled visit was at no time linked to the on-going negotiations between India and Sri Lanka on the controversial Economic and Technical Cooperation Agreement (ETCA). Her visit was only meant to reciprocate the visits to New Delhi of her Sri Lankan counterpart, Malik Samarawickrama. The Sri Lankan International Trade Minister had invited her to visit his country and she had accepted it. And while in Sri Lankan she had planned to meet President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe also. Indian Minister of State for Commerce, Nirmala Sitharaman, who was to visit Sri Lanka on August 25 for a short visit at the invitation of the Sri Lankan Minister of International Trade, Malik Samarawickrama, cancelled her visit on account of pressing engagements in New Delhi, reliable sources told the New Indian Express.It is learnt that she had to present in New Delhi at an important meeting on trade and economic affairs to be addressed by Prime Minister  Narendra Modi, and also to prepare for the Indo-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue in which US Vice President John Kerry is to participate. According to reliable sources, the first round on ETCA proved to be bumpy with the Sri Lankan and Indian delegations not being able to see eye to eye on many matters. The Sri Lankan delegation came up with many do’s and don’ts based on the domestic political situation in Sri Lanka which is hostile to ETCA. But the Indian side found the demands too exacting as there is a point beyond which India cannot disregard its own interests.India’s view is that the Sri Lanka side will have to sort out its problems with local interest groups which are up in arms against the very idea of an ETCA with India. While the general impression in Sri Lanka is that the idea of ETCA emanated in India and that India is trying to thrust it down Sri Lanka’s throat,  the fact is that ETCA was proposed by the Sri Lankan Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe, and the Indians just went along as this would be in Sri Lanka’s interest. It is learnt that ETCA was not going to be discussed at her meetings with Sri Lankan leaders. Negotiations on ETCA have just begun, with only one round of meetings having taken place so far and that at the Joint Secretary  level. In India’s view, ETCA would help solve some of Sri Lanka’s financial problems. Indian investments that ETCA would bring in, could help Sri Lanka get out of the debt trap in which it is now. But India, as such, does not stand to gain much from ETCA given the smallness of the Sri Lanka’s domestic market and its limited export potential.In the absence of a political consensus on ETCA in Sri Lanka, talks on it are likely to drag on and Colombo may not be able to reach its target of signing it by year end. (Colombo Gazette) read more

Klondex secures agreement to treat and test highgrade material at Fire Creek

first_imgKlondex Mines has entered into an agreement with Newmont Mining to begin processing Klondex’s higher grade mineralised material from the Fire Creek gold and silver project in Nevada this month. Under the agreement, Newmont is responsible for the handling, milling and refining of minerals as well as tailings and disposal, and Klondex is responsible for delivering the material. Shipments will be in lots of 1,000 t up to 9,000 t in 2013.The shipments will continue as needed through to the end of 2014 as high grade material is generated, with the first shipment of 1,000 t scheduled to begin in August 2013 and processing is expected to follow immediately upon receipt of the first lot.An initial payment of 60% will be paid to Klondex by Newmont, based on Newmont assays. The 40% balance will be paid based upon finalisation of settlement assays. The first payment from processing is expected in August 2013.Paul Huet, Klondex President and CEO said, “Testing this high-grade material not only gives us the much needed metallurgical information on Fire Creek mineralisation, but it allows us the opportunity to monetise mineralised material generated from the trial exploration drifting from the Joyce and Vonnie structures. Proceeds from the processing of this material will be used towards funding our own waste development and a second drill to follow up on recent discoveries. Newmont’s terms to process the Fire Creek material provide great opportunity and support for both parties based on the processing costs, improved recoveries and resulting payables. All near-term shipments of mineralised material will be sent for processing to Newmont, including May’s material previously slated for direct-smelter processing. The agreement with Newmont continues our ongoing focus of de-risking Fire Creek and building Klondex into a profitable and strong mining company.”last_img read more