Central Exploration and Research Institute for Non-Ferrous and Precious Metals (TSNIGRI) and OJSC Polyus Gold (RTS and MICEX: PLZL), Russia’s leading gold producer, today announced their joint project to conduct comprehensive research and produce a new valuation of Russia’s largest gold deposit Sukhoi Log in Irkutsk region.

TSNIGRI and OJSC Polyus Gold have signed an agreement to perform exploration drilling and drill samples’ analysis on Sukhoi Log with the view to update geological data on the deposit and its mineral base. The agreement was signed in the framework of the state contract to perform comprehensive technological, geological and economical reevaluation of Sukhoi Log deposit and development of innovative technologies signed by TSNIGRI with the Federal Subsurface Resources Agency (Rosnedra) through wining in an open tender in the summer of 2006. Under the contract the works commissioned to OJSC Polyus Gold will tale place in 3Q 2006 – 1Q 2007.

Commenting on the agreement, Director of TSNIGRI Igor Migatchev said that “Contracting OJSC Polyus Gold to produce a reevaluation of Sukhoi Log is one of the first working examples of mutual business-and-state partnership in the gold industry. I am confident that joining efforts of the leading precious metals research institute and the largest gold mining company will have a positive effect not only on Sukhoi Log development, but will also herald a new form of partnership between private business and sate research organizations.

CEO of OJSC Polyus Gold Evgueni Ivanov said he is pleased with the opportunity to develop a partnership with such a distinguished research body like TSNIGRI. He noted that “The knowledge and experience in treating Sukhoi Log ore accumulated by the company allow to expect maximum results from this new round of study on the deposit. The fact that OJSC Polyus Gold was invited to join efforts in reevaluating Sukhoi Log, one the world’s largest gold deposits, means that our expertise is highly acknowledged and demanded in the industry.” 

Note for editors 

OJSC Polyus Gold was formed in March 2006 as a result of the spin-off of MMC Norilsk Nickel’s gold mining assets. Polyus Gold is the leading gold producer in Russia. The group’s asset portfolio includes hard rock and placer gold deposits located in Krasnoyarsk, Irkutsk, Magadan, Yakutia and Amur regions of Russia. The company produced 1.1 million ounces of gold in 2005.

Central Exploration and Research Institute for Non-ferrous and Precious Metals (TSNIGRI) is a state research enterprise of the Russian Ministry of Natural Resources founded in 1935 as the leading institution called to provide exploration, mining, and processing expertise  in the field of precious metals production. TSNIGRI specializes in prospecting, exploration, reserves evaluation, feasibility study, and development of exploration and ore processing technologies for diamonds, precious and non-ferrous metals.