Sojitz Acquires Full Interest in Australia’s Gregory Crinum Coal Mine
May 30, 2018
Sojitz Corporation (“Sojitz”) has reached an agreement with BHP and Mitsubishi Corporation (“Mitsubishi”) to acquire 100% of Gregory Crinum coking coal mine in Australia. Ownership of the mine is currently split equally (50-50) between subsidiaries of BHP and Mitsubishi and will be acquired by Sojitz for AUD 100 million.
In December 2010, Sojitz, through its subsidiary Sojitz Coal Mining Pty Ltd, made its foray into becoming the manager and operator at the Minerva mine in Australia. Subsequently, Sojitz has also built and brought into production its second operating mine, Meteor Downs South (MDS), making Sojitz the only Japanese trading company to manage and operate coal mines. The acquisition this time will not only leverage off the expertise at Minerva and MDS, but will also strengthen Sojitz’s coking coal business and rebalance its coal assets currently weighted towards thermal coal, in view of the rising global concern for the environment and long-term business sustainability.
Although Gregory Crinum mine has been in care and maintenance since January 2016, it has a sufficient amount of coking coal reserves remaining at the mine. Sojitz plans to recommence operations at Gregory Crinum as soon as completion of the acquisition process.
While putting the Gregory Crinum back on line, Sojitz also plans to provide contract mining and related services to other nearby greenfield developments. In doing so, Sojitz aims to develop a stable business that is not exposed to the volatility of resources price, and to contribute to the local community through creating more jobs.
Rehabilitation obligations of the mine will be transferred to Sojitz, which involves restoring the natural environment by reforestation. The appropriate funding for the rehabilitation of the mine will be provided by BHP and Mitsubishi. Sojitz will establish a new subsidiary that will carry out rehabilitation at Gregory Crinum, as well as develop new environment-friendly businesses such as providing rehabilitation services and generating solar power to nearby mines. Through such wide range of business activities, Sojitz will contribute to realization of sustainable society by developing the local economy and protecting the environment.