Special Commission recognises importance of mining in Romania

Written by Catalin Hosu

The 11th November 2013 may well be regarded as a significant day for the future of mining in Romania.

Let’s be clear: the Special Commission’s rejection of the Draft Law was not a rejection of the Roşia Montană mining project.

In fact, the Commission concluded that the wording of the Draft Law was inadequate. Instead, they recommended that a new legislative framework be put in place for the implementation of large scale mining projects across Romania.

This has the potential to be great news for the people of Roşia Montană, the vast majority of whom, as we know, are in favour of the project. And for the Romanian economy which, as we know, stands to receive a direct contribution of $5.3bn USD from the project (at an assumed gold price of $1,200/oz).

This is about the future of mining in Romania – an industry we have a proud tradition of, dating back to Roman times.

Approximately 80% of the 650 mines that were operating in Romania in the early 1990s had been closed by 2006 (to meet EU accession criteria) and since then more than 200,000 jobs have been lost.

With the start of the Roşia Montană project (which will create more than 7,000 direct and indirect jobs) and the approval of many more mining projects across Romania, over 100,000 mining jobs could be created. This would have a hugely positive impact on the Romanian economy.

The conclusions of the Special Commission suggest that they recognise the importance of mining in Romania.