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Anglo American puts coal assets up for sale

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World Coal,

Anglo American is putting more than half of its Australian coal production up for sale and looking to divest South African coal assets as part of a strategic plan to refocus its business of its most profitable assets.

The London-based miner said it would sell its stakes in the Dawson and Foxleigh mines in Queensland, in addition to the already-announced sale of the Callide and Dartbrook mines.

“The four assets included in the sale package represent an impressive resource base of high-quality export coal, a long history of benchmark operational performance and good infrastructure access, said Seamus French, head of Anglo American coal business.

The sale would leave Anglo American operating the Moranbah and Capcoal complexes in Queensland and the Drayton mine in New South Wales, where it is trying to get approval for a Drayton South extension.

In South Africa, the company is said to be looking to sell the Kriel, New Denmark and New Vaal mines as the mining sector in the country comes under increased government interference.

As part of amendments to the Minerals and Petroleum Development Act, coal could be designated a strategic resources, limited the amount that company’s can export. There is also a push to increase black ownership of coal companies supplying state-owned utility Eskom.

Anglo American recently announced that it lost US$2.5 billion in 2014, including US$1 million at its Canadian and Australian coal businesses.

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