Johannesburg - Wesizwe Platinum [JSE:WEZ] announced on Monday
that the credit committee of the China Development Bank (CDB) has approved the
$650m loan for the development of the Bakubung Platinum Mine project in
As part of the loan agreement‚ CDB and Wesizwe signed two
separate $100m short-term loan contracts in December 2012‚ which will be
refunded by part of the $650m long-term loan‚ but are separate loan agreements.
One $100m loan was put in place in December 2012 and the
other $100m will be in place once the long-term loan $650m precedent conditions
have been finalised‚ including the contract and account agreement‚ the company
“Wesizwe is commencing the negotiation process on the
contracts in the coming weeks and the process will be finalised by end of
February this year. The above funding arrangements are in accordance with the
terms and conditions of investment entered into between Wesizwe and
China-Africa Jinchuan Investments‚ agreed to in terms of the subscription
agreement signed between the parties in May 2011‚”Wesizwe said.
According to the miner‚ Wesizwe’s Bakubung Platinum Mine
project‚ located in the Western Limb of the Bushveld Complex close to the town
of Rustenburg‚ is progressing well and remains on budget and on schedule.
Main commissioning of the mine is scheduled for 2018 and
full production is anticipated in 2023. The project is already benefiting local
people in the neighbouring Ledig area‚ with the project having achieved a local
employment percentage of 30.21%.
In addition‚ a programme of specialist training and
development initiatives to support the future employment needs of the mine has
been implemented‚ including a new‚ accredited Rock Drill Operator Academy which
took in the first local recruits in November last year‚ aimed at developing a
new essential mining skills training resource for the future.
Speaking on the announcement of the funding confirmation for
Bakubung Platinum Mine‚ Jianke Gao‚ Chief Executive Officer of Wesizwe‚ said:
“The confirmation of our new funding arrangements for our flagship project
represents the first of several important milestones to be reached and announced
this year and demonstrates the level of confidence in the project‚ and in the
future of the South African mining industry‚ on the part of our Chinese
shareholders. This is good news for Wesizwe and sends a positive signal to the
industry as a whole during what is currently a challenging period of time.”
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