The angriest guy in economics complains about low metals prices

Section:

From Reuters
Wednesday, January 5, 2005

http://yahoo.reuters.com/financeQuoteCompanyNewsArticle.jhtml?
duid=mtfh65755_2005-01-05_23-15-43_n05542915_newsml

VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- After four months
of silence, Eritrea has asked to meet with Nevsun
and Sub-Sahara Resources NL, two gold exploration
companies it unexpectedly ordered to halt operations
in the East African country in September.

Nevsun and Sub-Sahara received letters on Wednesday
from Eritrea's mines and energy minister commending
them on their patience and co-operation and inviting
them to Asmara.

Nevsun stock jumped 36 percent to C$2.90 and shares
in Sunridge Gold Corp., Sub-Sahara's partner, soared
67 percent to C$1.12 after the news as investors bet
that they would be allowed to resume work.

Nevsun said its chief executive would go to Eritrea in
the week of Jan 10. The company had been exploring
the Bisha gold deposit there, a find that had excited
markets.

"The request for a meeting from the minister is very
encouraging," Nevsun said in a statement. A
spokeswoman said the company had no further
information on an agenda for the meeting and that
CEO John Clarke knew nothing more despite repeated
visits to Eritrea.

Without giving any explanation, Eritrea told all foreign
mineral exploration companies to suspend work on
their projects on Sept. 2, news that sent their shares
plunging.

Nevsun's stock lost 67 percent last year, mostly
because of the Eritrea ban, causing it to drop out of
the S&P/TSX gold index in December.

Eritrea, wedged between Sudan, Ethiopia, and Djibouti
on the Red Sea coast, has seen only brief periods of
peace since a 32-year war for independence with
Ethiopia ended in 1991.

Industry observers have speculated that the country
might want to ensure it benefits more from its mineral
wealth, especially when the gold price is at its best
level 16 years.

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