Romanian Government Does Not Support Proposed Mine at Rosia Montana

Rosia Montana/Romania, 20 November 2004 – According to a media release issued by Budapest-based Radio Kossuth, Ms. Speranta Ianculescu, Romania’s Minister for the Environment and Water Management (MMGA) confirmed yesterday, during a meeting with her Hungarian counterpart Miklós Persányi that the Romanian Government does not support the realization of the mining exploitation at Rosia Montana.

Gabriel Resources (TSX:GBU), a junior Canadian mining company, intends to realize Europe's largest open-cast mining development in Rosia Montana, entailing amongst other things the involuntary resettlement of over 2000 people as well as the destruction of unique archaeological and natural sites. From its onset the development has been beleaguered by scandals, operational problems and vehement local, national and international opposition. After encountering critical uncertainties and debts Gabriel Resources entered into a 10 percent subscription agreement with Newmont Mining Corp. of Canada Limited, a subsidiary of Newmont Mining Corp. (NTSE:NEM), in September 2004 .

According to Radio Kossuth, Ms Speranta Ianculescu confirmed that “the Romanian Government does not support the realization of this large investment. To date, the Romanian-Canadian company has not requested the environmental license. Romania’s Line Ministry permanently follows the activities in Rosia Montana. Currently, there exists a surface exploitation which is state-owned; however, the Romanian-Canadian company has not started any kind of mining activity”.

In late October 2004, MMGA issued a press communiqué stating, amongst other, that “RMGC [Rosia Montana Gold Corp.] only carries out geological exploration works based on a research and geological prospecting program (drilling, sample taking and their analysis) which are the only works for which the company has a permit.” (1)

According to Mining Law 85/2003(2), Art. 3(1) mining activity means all the works related to the prospecting, exploration, development, exploitation, etc. Article 11 of Mining Law 85/2003 states that carrying out mining activities on the lands on which are located historical, cultural and religious monuments, archaeological sites of important interest and natural reservations […] is strictly forbidden.

According to Law 5/2000 Rosia Montana is declared a protected patrimonial site. Annex 3/1 of the same law stipulates that the Roman mine galleries of the village of Rosia Montana are patrimony of national interest.

“We have always maintained that this is an illegal mining development. RMGC has been carrying out mining activities in the protected zone of Rosia Montana, already endangering our cultural patrimony. It’s time for the responsible authorities to analyze Gabriel’s drilling results/reports, to read the law and to actually enforce it,” comments Eugen David, President of Alburnus Maior.


For more information please contact Alburnus Maior on +40 (0) 258 859 328 or
Eugen David on +40 (0) 740 280 309.

(1) See
(2) See