BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance (BMA) is selling its mothballed Gregory Crinum coking coal mine to Sojitz Corporation for $100 million.
Sojitz said today it planned to recommence operations at Gregory Crinum as soon as the acquisition process was complete.
The Gregory Crinum operation, 60km north-east of Emerald, comprises the Crinum underground mine, Gregory open cut mine, undeveloped coal resources and on-site infrastructure including a coal handling and preparation plant, maintenance workshops and administration facilities.
Gregory Crinum Mine’s capacity was six million tonnes of hard coking coal per annum when production ceased and it was placed into care and maintenance in January 2016.
Sojitz subsidiary Sojitz Coal Mining operates the Minerva mine, south of Emerald, and recently brought into production Meteor Downs South coal mine.
“The acquisition this time will not only leverage off the expertise at Minerva and MDS, but will also strengthen Sojitz’s coking coal business and rebalance its coal assets currently weighted towards thermal coal, in view of the rising global concern for the environment and long-term business sustainability,” the company said in a statement today.
While putting the Gregory Crinum mine back online, Sojitz said it also planned to provide contract mining and related services to other nearby greenfield developments.
In a statement today, BMA said the decision to sell the mine followed a detailed review that concluded there was potential for another party to realise greater value at the mine.
“This is a great outcome for the parties to the transaction and for the region. This will provide further employment in Emerald, and additional royalties and taxes to the people of Queensland,” BMA asset president Rag Udd said.
“We wish Sojitz well in its plans to recommence production at the site.”
Completion of the sale is subject to the fulfilment of conditions precedent including customary regulatory approvals, which could take several months.
BMA said it would be providing appropriate funding for rehabilitation of existing areas of disturbance at the site, with all rehabilitation liabilities transferred to Sojitz.