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Fresh bid to purchase TNMC

CHAKALISA DUBE
FRANCISTOWN: Close to 20 companies have began the process of scrutinising details about Tati-Nickel Mining Company (TNMC) with a view of tabling formal offers to buy the Mine.

The companies started the process of assessing the information about TNMC last week Thursday.

“The companies that have been allowed access in the data room at (TNMC) to access information about the mine are local, regional and international companies,” the liquidator of the Mine, Nigel Dixon-Warren said yesterday in an interview with Mmegi.

TNMC, which is a subsidiary of the BCL Group, will most likely go into final liquidation on April 9, 2018 if it does not find a suitable buyer or the court does not find convincing reasons to keep the Mine under provisional liquidation.

The companies have three weeks to assess the information about the viability of TNMC.

“After three weeks, the companies will be eligible to table offers and we will assess them with a view of choosing the most suitable as per interest of the creditors,” highlighted Dixon-Warren.

He said he is looking to complete the sale of the Mine in the next few months though he was not committal on the next date.

Dixon-Warren said he has successfully secured additional information that can aid the sale of the Mine from a company that was tasked with doing a feasibility study

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(the study was aborted following the closure of TNMC) for the Mine.

The information surrounds the viability of the Mine.

Many companies have been showing interest in buying the Mine since it was placed under provisional liquidation in October 2016.

The companies have however, failed to table tangible offers despite their much-publicised interest in buying the Mine.

Some investors did not fulfil certain requirements by the liquidator that is why they were not allowed to table offers to acquire the mine.

The government’s court case with Norilsk Nickel International, is also among factors why some investors did not buy the Mine.

Investors reportedly feared that they might be inheriting a liability by buying the Mine while the case is still ongoing. 

In 2016 Norilsk Nickel International, the Russian miner, issued a P2.1 billion lawsuit against the government after the state-backed BCL Group walked away from a deal to buy Nkomati mine in South Africa.

Then Norilsk had agreed to sell 50% of its stake from the BCL Group.

Now with indications that the government has reached an out of court settlement, there are improved chances that the sale of TNMC will soon come into reality.



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