London firm gets initial OK on Philippine mine permit

MANILA, March 11 – The Philippine government has given the preliminary go-ahead for an application by Metals Exploration Plc <MTL.L> for a large-scale mining permit, the London-listed company and officials said.

Metals Exploration’s application for its Runruno gold and molybdenum project in the northern Philippines has been endorsed by Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Lito Atienza and passed to President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo for final approval.

Metals Exploration said in November that output from the Runruno project was expected to reach 183,000 ounces of gold and 1.7 million pounds of molybdenum a year at full production, and total capital cost for the project was estimated around $208 million.

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