Nickel Mines to buy 70% stake in Indonesia project for $525 million

12/07/2021 | 05:53pm

(Reuters) - Australia's Nickel Mines Ltd said on Wednesday it would acquire a 70% stake in the Oracle Nickel project in Indonesia in a $525 million deal, as it sets its eyes on becoming a global top-10 producer of the commodity.

Under the deal, Nickel Mines will pay investment firm Shanghai Decent Investment (Group) Co Ltd $371 million and will be obligated to pump a further $154 million towards construction of the project.

Shanghai Decent, a unit of China's Tsingshan Holding Group, the world's largest stainless steel producer, will overlook the design and construction of Oracle Nickel, with commissioning of four rotary kiln electric furnace lines to commence no later than February 2023.

Actual construction costs for the project, together with a 380 megawatt power plant, will not exceed $750 million, the miner said in a statement.

Nickel is in high demand for its use in electric vehicle batteries as the world moves towards cleaner transportation and lower emission technology. Indonesia is the world's top nickel miner.

In October, the Australian miner raised its stake in the Angel Nickel project in Indonesia after buying an additional 30% from a unit of Tsingshan Group.

"The deals will help Nickel Mines more than triple its attributable nickel production and operational cash flows over the next 15 months," Managing Director Justin Werner said.

"Nickel Mines will sit comfortably amongst the top 10 global producers and be arguably the largest listed pure-play nickel exposure globally," he said.

(Reporting by Tejaswi Marthi in Bengaluru; Editing by Marguerita Choy)

© Reuters 2022
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