The Rosh Pinah mine
in south-western Namibia
 
Windhoek, Namibia — MININGREVIEW.COM — 10 June 08 – Diversified South African-based resources company Exxaro Resources, the Rosh Pinah Zinc Corporation (Pty) Limited and the Namibian empowerment company PE Minerals have announced that Exxaro has divested a 43,8% interest in Rosh Pinah to Namibian shareholder groupings. This effectively reduces Exxaro’s shareholding in Rosh Pinah to 50.04%, with 49.96% held by Namibian shareholders.

In an announcement released here it was confirmed that Exxaro would continue to manage the Rosh Pinah mine in south-western Namibia in terms of a management agreement. Together with Exxaro’s Zincor refinery in Gauteng, which it supplies with zinc concentrate, Rosh Pinah mine is part of one of the few integrated zinc mining and refinery operations in the world.

In the 2007 financial year Rosh Pinah and Zincor produced 95 000t of zinc concentrate and 100 000t of zinc metal respectively.

The Namibianisation transaction follows an agreement between Rosh Pinah, shareholder PE Minerals, the Namibian government and Exxaro’s predecessor, Iscor Limited, in terms of which the parties agreed to sell a 50% interest in Rosh Pinah to Namibian citizens. Prior to today’s transaction, the shareholding of Exxaro in Rosh Pinah was 93.9%, with PE Minerals holding 6.1%.

Exxaro’s chief executive officer Sipho Nkosi said: “It was only when buoyant zinc commodity prices improved substantially from mid-2006 that the parties were able to develop a bankable financial structure to support the transaction, bringing us to today’s reality.”

Rosh Pinah Zinc Corporation (Pty) Limited chairman and Exxaro chief financial officer Dirk van Staden, added: “The deal involves a major employer in and contributor to the Namibian economy, and adds significant value to a range of stakeholders, including the people of the country.”

PE Minerals chairman Aaron Mushimba commented: “Although commodity prices have improved significantly and mines are performing better, the financiers of this transaction would not have felt comfortable to finance it without the political stability created by the Namibian government. The shareholder base has been widened significantly among Namibians, including the workforce at Rosh Pinah.”