Mining licenses can be canceled only after compensation, say experts

Professional organizations feel that the announced revocation of 254 alluvial gold mining licenses in water basins and forest areas could prove unenforceable if they are challenged in court, as the law on mineral resources is clear that licenses can be canceled only after compensation is agreed upon and paid. There can be no cancellation before compensation. There is no allocation in the budget for such compensation, so the mining entities can claim to continue with work under their existing licenses. The State Organization of Geology and Mining has thus urged the Professional Monitoring Agency to suspend the licenses, instead of canceling them, so that no further work is done until the issue is resolved.
Mr. L. Davaatsogt, Head of the Department of Geology, Mining, and Cadastral Units at the Minerals Resources Authority, has said that their organization has the final responsibility for canceling licenses, and has not yet taken a decision on the Government resolution on November 17 to invalidate 254 gold mining licenses in environmentally sensitive areas. He said four requirements have to be met before they can act according to law. First, the government must define the specific boundaries where the offending licenses breach the law; second, it must also specify compensation procedures and rules; third, it must allocate the compensation money; and, fourth, there has to be an individual compensation agreement with every license holder.
Source: English.News.mn, Udriin Sonin
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