According to the General Directorate of Energy and Geology (DGEG) website, the contract was signed on 28 October between the Portuguese State, represented by the director-general of this body, and EVX Portugal, headquartered in Porto.

According to the document, this company holds the rights to prospect and research gold, copper, zinc, lead, silver, tin, tungsten and associated metals, for three years, in an area of ​​about 328 square kilometre, which covers the municipalities of Estremoz, Borba, Vila Viçosa and Alandroal, in the district of Évora.

The company EVX Portugal, according to the document, had to provide a financial guarantee to the amount of €45,000.

The contract is valid for three years, and may be extended for two years, by order of DGEG, provided that the company has complied with legal and contractual obligations and has delivered the duly substantiated extension request up to 45 days before the end of contract.

During the three years of the contract, EVX Portugal is obliged to invest a minimum amount of €450,000 in the execution of the prospecting and research work programmes and, if extended, another €250,000 is mentioned in the document.

“Once the discovery of any mineral occurrence, with possible commercial value, included or not in the object of the contract is verified, the company undertakes to communicate it to DGEG”, states the document.

The company will pay DGEG a fixed annual fee of €16,500 and, for each exploration concession granted to it, following this contract, it is also obliged to pay a premium of €1,000 per hectare, which may not be less than €200,000 per concession, on the area granted in each exploration contract.

According to information from the Government, on 28 October, nine mining contracts were signed, five for exploration and four for prospecting and research, in various parts of the country.