Shareholders of the $5.9 billion Tampakan gold and copper mine in the southern Philippines remain committed to undertaking the project despite strong local opposition, an official of Sagittarius Mines Inc. said on Thursday.

The official also said he is hopeful a provincial ban that put the project at risk will be lifted soon.

But Sagittarius, the local affiliate of Xstrata Plc and Indophil Resources NL , was concerned about the potential impact of a local ban on open-pit mining on the project that is considered as Southeast Asia's largest undeveloped copper and gold prospect, said Mark Williams, general manager of Sagittarius.

We're encouraged by the significant stakeholder support, Williams told reporters. We are hopeful of a timely resolution.