Congo state miner sells copper concession to Chinese investors
- Democratic Republic of Congo's state miner Gecamines said it has sold an exploitation permit for a copper and cobalt concession in southeast Katanga province to Chinese investors for $52 million.
In an statement on its website, Gecamines said that it sold the roughly 13 square kilometre concession to Congo Dongfang International Mining, a subsidiary of Chinese company Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt Co, Ltd.
The concession contains reserves of 354,619 tonnes of copper and 62,903 tonnes of cobalt, Gecamines said, and was controlled by its former subsidiary, Compagnie Miniere du Sud Katanga (CMSK SAS), which Gecamines has since absorbed.
Gecamines and another state-owned company, Simco, acquired full ownership of CMSK SAS in 2012 by purchasing a 60 percent stake from Belgian investor George Forrest's Entreprise Generale Malta Forrest (EGMF) for $58 million.
The statement said that the main reason for the sale was the significant distance between the concession and the concentrator it uses to process the extracted minerals, which Gecamines said imposed substantial transport costs.
Gecamines added that it had gained capital with the sale as it retains control of a concentrator and several other exploitation and research permits previously held by CMSK SAS.
Last month, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said that Gecamines' failure to publish the terms of a sale of state shares in a joint copper and cobalt mining venture to a Glencore unit breached government regulations and an agreement with the World Bank.
Publish date : Monday 13 July 2015 21:39
Story Code: 26035