While Northgate Minerals'
So was this another case of stepping on First Peoples' toes? Not at all. Teck and NovaGold had done their community-relations footwork. Necessary permits for the copper-gold-silver project were in hand back in June. Galore Creek's failure to launch appears purely economic.
Some of the cost elements are naturally beyond anyone's control. We saw the leaping Loonie deck Teck's tepid outlook. That currency strength, coupled with extremely tight markets for labor and supplies, still can't possibly account for the fact that the anticipated cost of Galore Creek has more than doubled to roughly $5 billion. The best explanation seems to be that an early assessment of the cost to build a mine-waste storage dam was wildly optimistic. That piece of the puzzle has popped to nearly half the entire project cost.
While NovaGold, being the smaller company, took the financial shellacking, Teck Cominco certainly gets a black eye for this error in execution. I've praised the company in the past for its ability to build and run mines, but I'm losing interest in the major miner, and I doubt that I'm alone. Now that its spat with Barrick Gold
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