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The Latest: Mine official downplays impact of failed deal

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) -- The Latest on a proposed copper-and-gold mine in southwest Alaska (all times local):

3:20 p.m.

Developers of a proposed copper-and-gold mine near a world-class salmon fishery in southwest Alaska are downplaying the impact after a deal with a potential investor fell apart.

Tom Collier is CEO of the Pebble Limited Partnership, which is owned by Northern Dynasty Minerals Ltd. Those entities want to develop the Pebble mine.

Collier, in a statement, says it's "business as usual" after Northern Dynasty said it had failed to finalize an agreement with First Quantum Minerals Ltd.

Collier says he believes Pebble will secure the funding necessary to continue the permitting process.

It wasn't immediately clear why the agreement faltered. A spokesman for First Quantum Minerals did not respond to a request for comment, and the company posted on its website a release from Northern Dynasty that lacks specifics.

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10:05 a.m.

A Canadian company that was courted as a potential partner in a proposed copper-and-gold mine near one of the world's largest salmon fisheries has backed away from the project.

Mine developer Northern Dynasty Minerals Ltd. says it was unable to finalize an agreement with First Quantum Minerals Ltd., the potential investor.

It was not immediately clear what the development means for the project. Neither company offered immediate comment on Friday.

The project has a permit application pending with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Mine opponent Joel Reynolds of the Natural Resources Defense Council says First Quantum Minerals did the right thing.

Reynolds says the project has been widely condemned.

The proposed mine is near Alaska's Bristol Bay, which is where about half the world's sockeye salmon is produced.