Two employees are missing after a major rock slide forced Centerra Gold Inc. to halt operations at its flagship gold mine in Kyrgyzstan.
The Toronto-based mining company said in a statement that a “significant rock movement” occurred at Lysii, one of the mine’s waste dumps at the Kumtor site, early Sunday morning.
Centerra has evacuated all staff from the site and is conducting a search-and-rescue operation in conjunction with the Kyrgyz Republic’s Ministry of Emergencies. Scott Perry, Centerra’s chief executive officer, said in a statement early Monday that search teams are working in “very challenging conditions.”
Centerra says it is re-evaluating the mine plan for Kumtor and can’t say when it might restart operations. Kumtor is Centerra’s biggest mine by far, with projected production of about 580,000 ounces of gold this year. The company also operates a copper-gold mine in Canada.
At one point on Monday, shares in Centerra were down by as much as 23 per cent on the Toronto Stock Exchange, before recovering to close down 11.4 per cent at $10.06.