The Turkish Ministry of Environment and Urbanization has given the environmental impact assessment (EIA) approval for Canada-based Centerra Gold‘s Oksut project.
Centerra Gold CEO Scott Perry said: "The company will now focus on obtaining all the necessary land use and other operational permits to allow us to start construction and development of the project late in the first quarter or early in the second quarter of 2016."
The company expects first gold production from the mine in the second quarter of 2017.
As on 30 June, the estimated mineral reserves of the Öksüt project were 26.1 million tonnes at an average grade of 1.4g of gold a tonne, containing 1.2 million ounces of gold.
According to the company, pre-production and construction capital is expected to be $221m, which includes a $25m contingency.
Discovered by Stratex International in early 2007, the Oksut project was originally an exploration joint venture between Centerra and Stratex.
The companies were parties to a joint venture arrangement, which was formed in 2009 in a bid to explore the project.
Centerra paid $3m to the JV through October 2011 to earn an initial 50% equity in the project and acquired an additional 20% interest in the project in October 2012, with an additional $3m contribution, thereby raising its equity interest to 70%.