NICKEL MINES IN MAS­SIVE IPO

The Australian Mining Review - - FRONT PAGE - REUBEN ADAMS

IN­DONE­SIA-fo­cussed Nickel Mines is of­fi­cially the sec­ond big­gest met­als and min­ing ini­tial pub­lic of­fer­ing of 2018 af­ter mak­ing its ASX de­but on 20 August.

The Aus­tralian com­pany, which holds an 80 per cent in­ter­est in the Heng­jaya nickel la­t­erite mine in In­done­sia, raised $200 mil­lion sell­ing shares at 35 cents each.

Nickel Mines will use the cash to di­ver­sify into down­stream nickel pig iron (NPI) pro­cess­ing and pro­duc­tion, ac­quir­ing a fur­ther 35 per cent in­ter­est in the Ro­tary Kiln Elec­tric Fur­nace (RKEF) project to in­crease its in­ter­est to 60 per cent.

In Septem­ber last year, the miner en­tered into an agree­ment ( CSA) with Shang­hai De­cent, a sub­sidiary of the world’s largest stain­less steel pro­ducer Ts­ing­shan Group.

The CSA in­cluded the terms on which a two-line RKEF plant within Ts­ing­shan’s neigh­bour­ing In­done­sia Morowali In­dus­trial Park (IMIP) op­er­a­tions and re­fin­ing cen­tre would be funded and con­structed.

“Nickel Mines is now on the cusp of be­com­ing a sig­nif­i­cant player in the global nickel in­dus­try hav­ing estab­lished a fi­nan­cial, op­er­a­tional and strate­gic part­ner­ship with China’s Ts­ing­shan Group, the world’s largest stain­less pro­ducer,” Nickel Mines chair­man Robert Neale said.

“Our col­lab­o­ra­tion will not only serve to con­tribute to Ts­ing­shan ex­pand­ing its stain­less steel pro­duc­tion at the IMIP to a tar­geted 3 mil­lion tonnes per an­num, but will pro­vide Nickel Mines with a plat­form to reap the sig­nif­i­cant eco­nomic ben­e­fits of be­com­ing a down­stream nickel pro­ducer.”

Mr Neale said con­struc­tion of the two RKEF lines were pro­gress­ing well, with most foun­da­tion works com­pleted by mid-August, and about 40 per cent pro­cure­ment and 20 per cent of civil works now com­pleted.

“We are op­ti­mistic our two RKEP lines will be ready to start com­mis­sion­ing early in the June quar­ter of 2019,” he said.

The com­pany also signed an MOU with Shang­hai De­cent in June to con­struct, own and op­er­ate two ad­di­tional RKEF lines.

With the op­tion of mov­ing to 100 per cent of four RKEF lines with to­tal out­put of about 33,000t of nickel metal per an­num, “Nickel Mines could lay claim to being the largest list pure-play nickel pro­ducer in the world”, Mr Neale said.

“Nickel Mines could lay claim to being the largest list pure-play nickel pro­ducer in the world.”

Im­age: Nickel Mines.

The Heng­jaya nickel la­t­erite mine in In­done­sia, which is in close prox­im­ity to the In­done­sia Morowali In­dus­trial Park op­er­a­tions and re­fin­ing cen­tre.

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