Indophil Resources’ share prices slumped after it announced the situation concerning a proposed government ban on open-pit mining in South Cotabato in the Philippines remained unclear.

Shares in the Australian gold mining company dropped 42% to 63 cents after the announcement was made.

The proposed ban by the South Cotobato provincial government would halt progress on the Tampakan copper-gold project, in which Indophil has a 37.5% share.

The environmental code that included the ban was approved by the outgoing provincial governor in her last days in office, but Indophil has discovered that the code has not yet taken effect.

The company said that Philippine President Benigno Aquino is seeking a solution to allow the development of the Tampakan project.

According to recent estimates, Tampakan is the largest undeveloped copper-gold deposit in South East Asia – Western Pacific region, with 13.5 million tons of copper metal and 15.8 million ounces of gold.