Venezuela, which earlier this month nationalized its gold mines, told Rusoro Mining Ltd. it plans to form a joint operating agreement with the Russia-based company, Rusoro said Thursday.

Rafael Ramírez, president of the state-owned oil company as well as energy and petroleum minister, said Venezuela aims for a controlling stake of 55 percent in the venture and will compensate Rusoro for its loss of ownership.

Rusoro continues to produce gold from two operations, the open pit Choco 10 mine and the high grade underground Isidora mine, a 50-50 joint venture with the Venezuelan government.