Gold Reserve awarded US$740mn after Venezuela expropriation

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

The World Bank's International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) ruled in favor of Gold Reserve, awarding the Spokane-based company US$740mn in its arbitration case against Venezuela's government, the company said in a release.

ICSID ruled that Venezuela breached the Canada-Venezuela Bilateral Investment Treaty when it rescinded property rights at the Brisas gold deposit in Bolívar state, according to the release.

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"While the company is pleased with the award it is less than the value of the Brisas project at today's gold and copper prices and Venezuela will substantially benefit from the development of the mine," Gold Reserve said in the release.

Gold Reserve, which had been seeking damages in the range of US$1.93bn, sought to reach a friendly agreement with Venezuela's government following the environment ministry's revoking of Brisas' construction permit in 2008, the company told BNamericas in February 2011.

The firm also signaled its current willingness to assist in the "fast-track development" of Brisas.

Gold Reserve said its investment at Brisas totaled around US$300mn.

BNamericas will host its 2nd Mexico Mining Summit in Mexico City on October 1-2.