CHINA MINER SEEKS FINANCING FOR PNG PROJECT

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PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (The National, July 16) – The China Metallurgical Construction (Group) Corp, developer of Ramu nickel project, is seeking offshore financiers to help with construction cost of US$700 million.

MCC Ramu Nickel Co Ltd president Yuxiang Gu told the mining seminar yesterday they are holding ongoing discussions with interested financiers.

"We expect to make master financing agreements with domestic lenders this year," Mr Gu said.

With its preparation for construction, the company had conducted surveys, environmental assessments and looked at local business development schemes.

"This project would mean foreign exchange earnings and revenue boost for Papua New Guinea, local employment opportunities, infrastructure and public sector improvement," he said.

With assets of over US$5 billion, CMCC’s holding interest in the Ramu project is 85 percent. The Ramu project contains an estimated resource of 143 million tonnes at 1.01 percent nickel and 0.1 percent cobalt.

Last year CMCC, a major Chinese State-owned construction and operating company, made a revenue of US$8.5 billion (K26.8 billion) ranking 29th among the top 500 Chinese enterprises.

Its core business is resource development in copper, nickel, gold, lead, zinc and it has assets in Asia, Africa, Pacific region and Europe, with Ramu Nickel being its biggest overseas project.

July 17, 2006

The National: www.thenational.com.pg/

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