April 20, 2015 / 8:39 PM / in 4 years

Shandong acquires Tonkolili iron ore mine from African Minerals

April 20 (Reuters) - Chinese steel company Shandong Iron and Steel Group said it had acquired the remaining 75 per cent stake in the Tonkolili iron ore mine in Sierra Leone from the mining company African Minerals for over $170 million.

Shandong now has 100 per cent of equity in Tonkolili, and will also own the associated infrastructure company African Port and Railway Services, it said in a press release.

Shandong will provide further funding including $600 million to progress Phase 2 of the Tonkolili Project, which will see production lifted to 25 million tonnes a year.

Last month, African Minerals said it had appointed administrators after failing to repay Shandong, which was its lender and partner in the Tonkolili project.

African Minerals has been battered by a rout in iron ore prices and costs related to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.

Tonkolili is the second largest iron ore mine in Africa and has one of the largest magnetite deposits in the world.

Shandong said it intended to return the mine to full production and protect the assets against the imminent wet season. (Reporting by Shivam Srivastava in Bengaluru; Editing by Kevin Liffey)

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