The Costa Rica News (TCRN) – Costa Rica’s government passed a resolution in the Constitutional Court, the highest legal body in this country, which closed the door permanently to a controversial mining project driven by a Canadian company.
The Minister of Environment and Energy, René Castro, said in a statement that “Costa Rica has reason to celebrate with this decision, because supports a major convictions of Costa Ricans do not want strip mining in our country”.
The firm Industrias Infinito, a subsidiary of Canada’s Infinito Gold, had a 10-year concession to operate at least 19.8 tons of gold in the north of Costa Rica.
However, the project never had popular support, thousands of Costa Ricans protested for years against the opening of the mine.
The concession to Industrias Infinito was overturned by the courts of the country in 2010 after evidence a series of irregularities in the award process.
The company started in 1995 mining exploration in the area of Las Crucitas, near the border with Nicaragua and had the necessary permits to operate, but could not due to multiple legal appeals lodged by environmental groups.
In 2011 they lost a first appeal to the judgment of the Administrative Court, and now with the resolution of the Constitutional Court are exhausted legal avenues to resume the project.
For Castro, “the resolution of the Constitutional Court is entirely consistent with the position of this Government, which amended the law to prohibit mining open pit gold”.
In November 2010, Costa Rica amended its Mining Code and declared Costa Rica free of open pit mining.
Industrias Infinito few weeks ago announced it will sue Costa Rica by $1 billion+ dollars for the judicial annulment of the award of the project.
The company aims to bring the case before the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), an autonomous agency of the World Bank.
The Costa Rica News (TCRN)
San Jose Costa Rica