Toronto-listed Rusoro, owned by Russia's Agapov family, is the only large gold miner operating in Venezuela. It produced 100,000 ounces last year.
The gold industry will be just the latest part of the economy to be put under state control by the socialist leader, who said he would issue the necessary decree in the coming days and called on the military to help control the sector.
"I have here the laws allowing the state to exploit gold and all related activities ... we are going to nationalize the gold and we are going to convert it, among other things, into international reserves because gold continues to increase in value," Chavez said in a phone call to state television.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission says the unit 1 reactor at Sequoyah Nuclear Plant near Chattanooga automatically tripped.
The commission said the incident late Thursday night was traced to a coolant pump and apparently caused no leakage. It was classified non-emergency. Auxiliary feedwater automatically actuated as expected, the commission said Friday. The unit 2 reactor was not affected, the commission said.