THE BOURSE WHISPERER: Atlantic Gold (ASX: ATV) has made progress with its surface lands acquisition program over the footprint of the company’s Touquoy gold project in Nova Scotia, Canada.
The company said it had secured possession of four of the last five remaining non-Crown titles, from a total of 63 private properties required for development of the project, in mid-December 2012, which it had expected, under the provisions of the Expropriation Act.
However, the vesting order issued by the Nova Scotia Minister of Natural Resources in relation to the one remaining property is subject to appeal by the former landowner.
At this time the appeal is set to be heard in April 2013.
Atlantic said two preliminary matters have now been brought before the Court.
The first matter, that interveners be permitted to participate in the appeal, was heard on 19 November 2012 with the Court delivering its decision that the Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture was granted intervener status.
However, counsel for the Appellant spoke on behalf of this Federation at the motion, of which the Court noted a potential conflict of interest and expressed serious concerns if counsel for the Appellant continued to speak on behalf of the Federation.
The Mining Association of Nova Scotia was also granted intervener status.
“The decision to add these interveners was made on the basis it would neither slow the process nor unduly prejudice any party,” Atlantic Gold said in its ASX announcement.
The second matter involved a motion by the Appellant to have the appeal heard as a trial de novo rather than an appeal on the record.
This motion was heard on 3 January 2013 with the Court making an immediate decision, dismissing the Appellant’s motion.
“Although anxious to expedite this process, the company is nevertheless satisfied with these outcomes,” Atlantic said.
“It firmly believes the Minister’s decision was made in accordance with the process set out under Nova Scotia’s Mineral Resources Act and remains confident that this appeal will be dismissed.”