One of the world's leading gold mining companies Barrick Gold has successfully overturned a Chilean court ruling against it.
Previously a court ruling had annulled a purchase agreement allowing Barrick mineral rights in the Pascua-Lama mining project owned by Villar, but the Santiago Appeals Court has now ruled in Barrick's favour.
The Canadian firm will be relieved with the Chilean ruling had the original decision not been overturned it could have seriously derailed the company's plans for the $2.4 billion Pascua Lama gold mine project.
Chilean environmental groups and many others remain opposed to what could amount to the biggest ever foreign investment in the country, but the finding of procedural irregularities in the lower court's prior rulings are a boost to Barrick.
The mining giant said that the decision reflected the fact that Villar claims did not cover the area in question, championing the legal green light now enabling the continuation of the Pascua-Lama project.
"Barrick owns the surface rights to the area, enabling it to proceed with construction at Pascua-Lama when it receives final sectoral/administrative permits and resolves outstanding fiscal matters," said the company in a press release.