Wednesday, April 23, 2008

RMMI Buys Mining Co TSCC Armenia For $200 Mln

SINGAPORE (Dow Jones)--RAK Minerals & Metals Investments, a Ras Al Khaimah-based investment company jointly promoted by the Ras Al Khaimah government (Ras Al Khaimah is one of seven emirates in the United Arab Emirates) and Trimex Group, has acquired Armenian mining company TSCC Armenia for $200 million, Managing Director Madhu Koneru said.

Speaking to Dow Jones Newswires on the sidelines of Asia Mining Congress 2008, Koneru said the investment includes the cost of acquiring existing assets of TSCC Armenia as well as setting up a greenfield concentrate plant as part of the project. An official announcement on the deal is expected shortly.

The acquisition involves three mining complexes spread across North and South Armenia and includes copper and other polymetallic minerals, Koneru said.

In the next two years, RMMI plans to build a concentrate plant in South Armenia's Larneshan region to process copper and polymetallic ores into concentrates.
RMMI's ownership of natural resources as well as the capability to convert ores into concentrates opens up the option to set up smelters in the future, said Koneru.


Looking For Coal Mining Assets In Indonesia

RMMI, equally owned by the RAK Investment Authority and the Trimex Group, has set aside $1 billion for acquisitions this year, Koneru said.

The Armenian acquisition is the second major investment by the company outside Ras Al Khaimah after it announced a $250 million investment in Congo early last month.
With another $550 million still left in its kitty, RMMI is actively looking for other acquisition targets, this time in the coal mining sector of Indonesia, Koneru said.

Indonesia probably has around 3 billion metric tons of coal reserves in South Sumatra province and as much as 10 billion to 15 billion tons of reserves in Kalimantan, he said.
"Our strategy is to have a balanced portfolio across Africa, the Asia Pacific and Eastern Europe, within the range of our target markets of China, India and the Middle East," Koneru said, adding the company also wants its investments to be spread across mainly three commodities - copper, industrial minerals and coal.

Earlier this year, the Ras Al Khaimah Investment Authority and RMMI together signed an agreement with the provincial government of South Sumatra to develop the Tanjung Api-Api Port, a nearby industrial city and an industrial park with supporting facilities.
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