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Rail funding will unlock Mongolian coal potential

World Coal,

Aspire Mining’s Ovoot coking coal project looks set to take a major step forward after the company received several non-binding Expressions of Interest (EOI) totalling US$ 1.3 billion for financing of the Northern Rail Line in Mongolia.

Capital expenditure

The US$ 1.3 billion total equates to the capital expenditure estimate for the Northern Rail Line as highlighted in the Rail Pre-Feasibility Study completed by SMEC International in April 2013.

Rail concession

Aspire Mining sourced the EOIs from a number of financial institutions and the Noble Group, as part of its ongoing discussions with the government of Mongolia in relation to the grant of a rail concession. Although the EOIs are non-binding, they indicate a broad interest to fund the Northern Rail Line.

Northern Rail Line

The Northern Rail Line project is the focus of Northern Railways LLC, Aspire’s Mongolian infrastructure subsidiary that seeks to extend the Trans-Mongolian Railway from its current terminus at Erdenet through to the Ovoot coking coal project.

Export opportunities

The rail line will be multiuse, providing an alternative, cheaper and environmentally friendly transport solution for agricultural products, general freight, bulk materials and passengers. The operation of the Northern Rail Line will assist the sustainable long-term growth of local industry and the economy through the creation of jobs, resource and small-medium business development, and export opportunities.

Edited from various sources by Katie Woodward

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