Gold miner Kinross has decided to pause Phase Two activities at its Tasiast mine following a decision in early May by the government of Mauritania to reject a permit and a desire to enter into discussions about the miner’s activities in the country.

Kinross said it is analyzing alternative throughput expansion options at Tasiast as it continues to engage with the government.

“The completion of our evaluation of alternative approaches, and a Phase Two restart decision, are subject to our ongoing engagement with the government,” said J. Paul Rollinson, president and CEO. “We remain committed to disciplined capital allocation as we seek additional clarity on the matter.”

Phase One construction is complete, first ore has gone through the SAG mill, commissioning is in the final stages, and the project has been transferred to operations.

The Tasiast mine is an open-pit operation located in northwestern Mauritania, approximately 300 kilometers (km) north of the capital Nouakchott. Tasiast processes ore via an 8,000-metric-ton-per-day mill and heap leach.