Kapan Residents Wondering How Much Gold and Other Precious Metals Exported out of Armenia Together with Concentrates

Kapan Residents Wondering How Much Gold and Other Precious Metals Exported out of Armenia Together with Concentrates


How much gold and polymetals are available in the copper and zinc concentrated developed by Kapan Ore Processing Combine? Whether there are data available how much gold and other precious metals are exported out of Armenia together with the concentrate as a result of their sale? These questions were raised by the representatives of Kapan civil society at the meeting organized by EcoLur in Kapan Electronic Library on 3 May 2019 within the frames of the discussions named “Be Aware and Demanding, Protect Your Interests and Rights in Armenian Processes of EITI”. The discussion was organized within the frames of “Mining-impacted Communities – Full Participants in EITI Process” project.

Project expert Harutyun Movsisyan noted that the Multi-Stakeholder Group (MSG) of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative discussed that within the frames of the EITI metallic mining companies presented the quality indicators of the mined and developed ores. “If we can reach  the situation when the quality indicators of the produced concentrate becomes public, we will be able to see whether or not the concentrate contains cold, and how many grams the concentrate contains on average, 1 or 8 grams. However, the law doesn’t ban to have gold or other metal in the concentrate,” Harutyun Movsisyan said. He mentioned that these data may be published in the EITI report for 2019 or 2020.

Harutyun Movsisyan presented to the participants the financial data of “Kapan Ore Processing Combine” CJSC for 2016-2017 operating Shahumyan gold-polymetallic mine published in the first EITI national report. Particularly, the annual circulation of Kapan Ore Processing Combine for 2017 made up 29,708,940,903 AMD, out of which payments to the state budget accounted for 11,281,500,000 AMD while in 2016 these figures accounted for 3,929,000,000 AMD.

In 2016, the company produced 5649 wet metric tons of copper concentrate equivalent to 8,620,603,075 AMD, whereas 7 994 wet metric tons of copper concentrate equivalent to 12,797,250,394 AMD was produced in 2017.

Kapan Town is located under the impact of two large mining enterprises – Zangezour Copper and Molybdenum Combine and Kapan Ore Processing Combine. Kapan Combine paid 4,971,764 AMD to the state budget as environmental fees, while these figures accounted for 4,903,232 AMD in 2017, whereas Zangezour Combine paid 11,990,684  AMD in 2016 and 22,376,624 AMD in 2017.

Harutyun Movsisyan presented that according to the EITI national report,  6,276, 100 AMD for spent for environmental measures in Kapan Town, while in 2017 it was 8,875,000 AMD. These funds are subvention allocations to Kapan from the environmental payments made by Kapan and Zangezour Combines. With these funds, in 2016-2017 pavements were improved in A. Manukyan Street, trees were planted and green areas were recovered. In 2016-2017 subvention allocations haven’t been made for health measures.

Syuniq Regional Municipality Employee Hayk Karakhanyan raised the problem of health-related issues in Kapan. “Monitoring has been carried and it has been found out that the rate of cancer diseases are the lowest in Syunik Region. If there is no cancer department here in Kapan, it means there are no people with cancer here. People go to Yerevan in their latest stages, as it is difficult to reveal them here. Kapan hospital also doesn’t have equipment for computer tomography,” he said.

“The mechanisms of calculating environmental fees shall be changed and funds shall be added to make producers pollute less…” Kapan residents added.

In his turn, Harutyun Movsisyan said that according to the existing law, each enterprise pays for its emissions and the accumulative impact is not assessed here. All together, the emissions of several enterprises can exceed the limits of permissible emission, but they carry out individual assessments and says that its emission are within permissible limits,” Harutyun Movsisyan said.

During the discussions, different proposals were made given below:

1. Within the EITI, a mining company shall publicise annual ore mining volumes,

2. Within the EITI, a mining company shall publicise the quality indicators of mined and processed ores mentioning data on the concentration of precious metals available in the concentrates.

3. To present a report on the funds paid by the mining companies to the state budget and local governments to the population.     

4. To change the mechanisms of calculating environmental fees     to increase the rate of environmental fees paid for emissions, which will make the producers pay less, as well as in the course of developing new mechanisms of calculating environmental fees, take into consideration the cumulative impact of several enterprises on the community/environment and to limit the aggregate emissions of these enterprises within the ranges of permissible limits.

5. To ban dumping industrial water of chemical and biological cleaning into the rivers.

6. To set compensation for excessive environmental damage, when it will be more beneficial for the enterprise to prevent causing damages than to compensate it.

7. To increase the efficiency of the supervision over mining sector.

8. To nationalize 51% of mining to make it more controllable,

9.  To permit the EITI MSG to enter the mine areas,

10. To establish an institute of local referendum,

11. To expand mining areas only with the permission of the residents,

12.  To equip Kapan Medical Center with diagnostic and treatment equipment.

13. The company shall make an annual report on the social support measures carried out in the community, as well as environmental measure already carried out and planned for implementation.

This material has been prepared within “Mining-Impacted Communities – Full Participants in EITI Process'” project implemented by EcoLur with the USAID support within the frames of “Engaged Citizenry for Responsible Governance” project implemented by Transparency International Anticorruption Center.

This article is made possible by the generous support of the American People through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The contents of this article are the sole responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government.

15:53 May 16, 2019


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