UPDATE 1-Greece to rule on European Goldfields by Feb-source

* Govt official says have been no problems with application

* European Goldfields had expected decision by end 2010

(Adds analyst comment, shares)

By Angeliki Koutantou and Julie Crust

ATHENS/LONDON, Oct 21 (BestGrowthStock) – London-listed European
Goldfields (EGUq.L: )(EGU.TO: ) will get a decision on a long
awaited Greek mining permit by early February, a government
official told Reuters on Thursday, noting there had been no
problems with the application.

European Goldfields’ unit in Greece, Hellas Gold, currently
operates a mine in Halkidiki, Northern Greece, and submitted an
environmental impact study (EIS) in August to develop two
goldfields in the area.

“Roughly, I can say that we expect the decision to be ready
in January, early February,” said a Greek Environment Ministry
official who declined to be named.

That would be later than the year-end deadline the company
indicated, although the source said the government did not see
any problems with the application.

“For the time being, we do not have any difficulties with
the submission,” the source said.

The official said other Greek ministries, and the public
would be consulted before the final ruling.

European Goldfields declined to comment.

Shares in European Goldfields have more than doubled in
London this year mainly driven by the company’s progress with
its permit applications in Greece and Romania.

“It is very encouraging that the environmental permit is
being fairly considered and that the ministry doesn’t seem to
have any problem at this stage,” said John Meyer, an analyst at
Fairfax IS. “A delay of a couple of months is relatively short
in the scheme of Greek environmental permits.”

The shares were up 1.3 percent at 843.31 pence by 1317 GMT,
valuing the company at about 1.4 billion pounds ($2.2 billion).
The FTSE All Share index (.FTAS: ) was up 0.58 percent.
(Editing by Paul Hoskins, Sharon Lindores)
($1=.6333 Pound)

UPDATE 1-Greece to rule on European Goldfields by Feb-source