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AML secures $417m

AML secures $417m

Leading iron ore project Development Company in Sierra Leone, African Minerals Limited (AML) has finalised its secured loan facility agreement with final commitments amounting to $417.7m.  

According to a regulatory news service announcement (RNS) from the London Stock Exchange, the secured loan facility will allow the company to fund completely Phase 1 of its flagship Tonkolili project, taking it through to first production, expected later this year.  

Pat Ramunno is GM, Tonkolili project

“The material terms of the facility are contained in the company’s press release of 8 December 2010. Funding is expected to occur on or around the week commencing 14th February 2011 upon satisfaction by the company of certain conditions precedent,” the statement said.  

 As at the end of December 2010, the company had a cash balance of $372m and had spent $380m of the $1100m estimated cost of completing of Phase 1 of the project, leaving approximately $720m remaining to be incurred.  

Meanwhile, this new secured loan facility, together with the year end cash position and the subsequent receipt of $46m from CRM, provides pro forma available funds of $836m.  

Executive Chairman, Frank Timis, commented: “We are pleased to have secured the funding necessary for African Minerals to complete Phase 1 of the Tonkolili Iron Ore Project. The $770m of funds raised through the recent equity and debt issues underline a growing investor confidence in the prospects for both African Minerals Limited and for the country, the people and the government of Sierra Leone.”  

Frank Timis, Executive Chairman, African Minerals

In a related move AML has just appointed John (Jack) Finlay MacKenzie  Rowley as Chief Operating Officer, effective immediately.   

Jack Rowley, aged 51, was, between 2002 and 2008, founding shareholder and Managing Director of Calibre Global Pty Ltd, which specialised in Engineering, Procurement, Construction Management (EPCM) delivery to the major participants in the iron ore industry providing services covering all operations from pit to port.  

Calibre’s principal customers were Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton’s Australian operations across various commodities, but primarily iron ore.  

In the iron ore sector Mr Rowley has been involved across greenfield, brownfield and expansion projects in projects such as Rio Tinto’s Eastern Range, Yandicoogina, West Angelas, Cape Lambert, BHP’s Nelson Point, Pilbara, Port Headland and Brockman. 

Mines Min. Minkailu Mansaray and Dep. Ignosi Koroma are hopeful

Commenting on the latest major appointment, Frank Timis, Executive Chairman of African Minerals said: “I am delighted to be able to announce the appointment of Jack to this critical position. He brings with him a depth and breadth of experience which will prove invaluable for both the delivery of the Phase 1 project at Tonkolili, and for the future success of African Minerals.”     

By Tanu Jalloh, AML     

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