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Sylvania Platinum to sell SA assets

Jul 08 2011 09:31 Reuters

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Bangalore - Sylvania Platinum said on Friday it would dispose off its iron ore assets in the Bushveld Complex in South Africa to focus on expansion and meet production targets.

"At present, the board does not believe any value is being ascribed to the company's iron assets," the company said in a statement, adding that it was uncertain if further exploration would result in determination of a mineral resource.

Sylvania Platinum, which acquired the iron ore assets in September 2009, said the divestment would allow the company to concentrate on production expansion from its platinum group metal (PGM) tailings dumps and development of the Northern Limb PGM.

The company's 2012 production targets include successful optimisation of two existing plants, Lannex and Mooinooi, and development of the its sixth plant, Tweefontein.

The Bushveld Complex contains some of the richest ore deposits with reserves of platinum group metals (PGMs), platinum, palladium, osmium, iridium, rhodium and ruthenium.

PGMs have various applications in chemical, electrical, glass, and petroleum refining industries. They are also used in jewellery. Out of the six metals in the group, platinum, palladium and rhodium are the most significant.

Sylvania Platinum shares, which have shed 28% of their value in the last three months, were trading up 4% at 36.5 pence at 09:06 on Friday on the London Stock Exchange.
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