ASX-listed Kogi Iron has signed a memorandum of understanding with two major African-based groups, Tenova and PW, to “progress” its Agbaja iron ore and steel project.Kogi Iron said it selected Tenova and PW as they are suitable providers of technical, engineering, construction and mining services to the Nigeria-based Agbaja project. The MOUs create a framework under which contracts for service can be negotiated subject to suitable commercial terms being agreed, but Kogi is not bound by the MOU if acceptable terms are not reached.

Tenova specialises in the design and supply of high-capacity electric submerged-arc smelting furnaces and complete smelting plants for the production of ferroalloys, base metals, slag cleaning and alloy refining.

PW is a mining, construction and civil engineering group that has operated in Nigeria for 42 years and has served a wide range of corporate and government clients such as Shell, Chevron and the Nigerian Federal government, according to Kogi Iron.

Kogi chairman Ian Burston said the MOUs represented an important step in the development of Agbaja. “We believe they are the right organisations to partner with Kogi to complete the feasibility study detail and develop the Agbaja project.”

Negotiations with Tenova and PW will be advanced during a visit to Nigeria later this month, when Kogi will host a site visit by potential international partners in the project.

Tenova has previously worked with Kogi by conducting production testing of ore from the Agbaja project to assess the levels of iron content and impurities. According to Kogi the testing confirmed that Kogi was capable of producing steel products with 95%+ iron content and low impurities.