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Blair suffers rebuke over lobbying

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    Blair suffers rebuke over lobbying

    Blair's lobbying for gold firm backfires
    From the independent online

    Tony Blair has received a strongly worded rebuke from the Kyrgyzstan government over his efforts to lobby the country on behalf of an AIM-listed mining company.

    The Prime Minister wrote a private letter to the President of Kyrgyzstan, Kurmanbek Bakiyev, last month in support of Oxus Gold, which had its mining licence for a project in the country removed by the Kyrgyz government.

    Mr Blair had suggested in the letter Kyrgyzstan was not living up to its obligations under his global anti-corruption initiative and the affair meant "there is a real danger of damage to Kyrgyzstan's reputation in the international financial markets".

    The Kyrgyz government delivered an angry reply from Mr Bakiyev yesterday, who told Mr Blair: "We need not be reminded of our obligations under the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative.... My government is committed to implementing these international agreements and we seek your help in their legitimate fulfilment."

    The Kyrgyz government, elected last year after a popular revolution, said Oxus had not fulfilled its obligations to develop the Jerooy gold mine. Mr Bakiyev wrote: "Based on Oxus Gold's irresponsible and unlawful behaviour, we have no confidence they and their subsidiary will meet their contractually mandated obligations to our government." Oxus said it had fulfilled the conditions of its licence.

    The company, which raised $60m (£33m) in 2004 on AIM to develop the Jerooy project, is close to finishing construction of the mine.

    Oxus is thought to believe it has become victim of an attempt by a group of Georgian businessmen, in league with the Kyrgyz authorities, to take over its mine. Oxus said: "The company is concerned to have been approached in December 2005 by a potential second investor purportedly on the instructions of the [Kyrgyz] Prime Minister. The representatives who approached the company refused to disclose the ultimate identity of this investor.... Under these circumstances the company was unable to enter negotiations with the investor's representatives."

    A Downing Street spokesman declined to comment on the contents of Mr Blair's letter.


    Nice one,

    The same kind of thing is happening in the Ukraine with Regal petroleum and although I am a bit sketchy on the details , it appears to effectivly has taken away licences and drilling rights granted under the previous government based on "procedural" irregularities.

    As it seems to be the case in most of EE, standards and laws are selectively applied to the advantage of the party with the biggest stick.
    There are no evil thoughts except one: the refusal to think


      Interesting observation SuS.

      On the topic of gold, I have ben pondering whether to include this glorious commodity in my Portfolio, to balance my perhaps over addiction to Oil , which Ive made quite a few bob on inthe recent past .

      Anyway I was interested by this snippet, so anybody who may have invested in Gold, or any other previous metals, I would be interested to hear their comments...

      Gold's 37 percent rise in six months to 25-year highs, far from a price-bubble ready to pop, will continue upwards on renewed fund enthusiasm, analysts said.

      The bull market may attract even more new money in the coming years, with potential for bigger price spikes, they said.

      "Like a gorilla with a gun, gold can go anywhere it wants," said Peter Hillyard, head of metals sales, ANZ Investment Bank.

      "With the quest for yield, the need for portfolio diversification and the huge appetite funds have for risk, all commodities are certain to rock for a lot longer. It's not a bubble about to burst."

      Gold prices peaked at $573.30 a troy ounce on Thursday, gaining 11 percent this year on top of an 18 percent rise in 2005. The metal has more than doubled in five years.

      But analysts say gold has room to go much higher. It is still well off January 1980's all-time high of $850, a level which would now stand at $2,100 after adjusting for inflation.

      Many analysts have frequently revised price forecasts, such has been the speed and strength of the upmove.

      UBS Investment Bank this week lifted its average price forecast to $560 an ounce for 2006 and $600 for 2007 from $520 and $500 respectively. Gold could trade to a high of $675 at some point next year, it said.

      A Reuters poll showed last month an average gold price of $525 in 2006, up 18 percent from $445.05 last year. The metal was seen gaining further to an average $550 in 2007.

      "I do not see any bubble on the gold market. Prices have been firmly supported by fundamentals. Most notably, changes in global liquidity have put upward pressure on prices," said Michael Widmer, analyst at Macquarie Bank Ltd.
      Last edited by AlfredJPruffock; 3 February 2006, 11:54.


        The point

        Thats not really the point I am trying to make.

        I am not financially literate enough to comment on whether buying gold now is a good idea or not,but buying gold and investing in "natural resources prospect" are two very different things

        IMHO, the former concerns the underlying global value of the natural resource and the latter comprises of many more things.

        The latter is affected by regional factors such as security and economic stability as well as the global value of the resource. Eg There may be loads of copper in Katanga but if the miners are losing legs treading on landmines and processing plants are being blown up by militia I fail to see how the prospect would be a good investment.

        Closer to topic, investing in the CIS is a high risk game owing to no adherence to corporate and legal standards and the fundemental mentality that any beurocracy and administrations purpose is not compliance but for manipulation to achieve the protagonists agenda.

        In a nutshell, in most of these places the governments can do what they like and based on what I have read and what I have seen, I would be very wary of any Western concern promoting natural resources prospects in former CIS becuase I dont believe that on the whole they can control the political and financial interests of the host government or their proxies(In this case Georgian "gangstahs")
        There are no evil thoughts except one: the refusal to think


          I thought Tony Blair was leader of the world and all-round good guy?


            don't urinate there Lizard old chap, I hate to dance in puddles of pee
            ("")("") Born to Drink. Forced to Work


              Oxus Gold?

              That's not a very Indian sounding company name, surely?
              Is it a front?
              Why not?


                Originally posted by wendigo100
                I thought Tony Blair was leader of the world and all-round good guy?
                Maybe but there is Gold in them Gulags, at which point all moral considerations take a distinct back place.

                Head them off at the pass Tony ....


                  Moral considerations

                  Originally posted by AlfredJPruffock
                  Maybe but there is Gold in them Gulags, at which point all moral considerations take a distinct back place.

                  Head them off at the pass Tony ....
                  Moral considerations
                  No, you've got me Alf, what's them, then?
                  Why not?


                    Originally posted by Dundeegeorge
                    Moral considerations
                    No, you've got me Alf, what's them, then?
                    Moral ...I think its something or to do with sexual acts.

                    Perhaps thats why Mr Blair has that inane grin !