Aspire Mining, an exploration and development company, has agreed to buy Xanadu Mines’ (Xanadu) 50% stake in the Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV) which holds a 60% stake in the Nuurstei Coking Coal project in Northern Mongolia with an option to increase it to 90%.
The Noble Group, which holds 15% interest in Aspire, will own the remaining 50% ownership of the ECJV along with marketing rights for Nuurstei project production.
The acquisition is in line with Aspire's strategy to explore and develop Mongolian metallurgical coal projects in partnership with the Noble Group.
The deal allows Aspire and Noble to enhance the existing strategic alliance in relation to project financing, supply chain logistics, port and rail capacity access.
As per the terms of the agreement, Aspire will issue ten million shares to Xanadu and a further five million shares if 30 million tonnes of JORC compliant resources are identified in the Nuurstei project.
Aspire Mining managing director David Paull said: "Aspire is very pleased to become involved in developing the Nuurstei Project in partnership with the Noble Group as we investigate the possibility of a start to production from the Nuurstei Project pre-rail."
"There are many potential synergies with the Ovoot Coking Coal Project, not the least of which potentially being an important initial customer for Northern Railways LLC," added Paull.
ECJV gained control of the Nuurstei project in mid-2011.Located near the Khuvsgul provincial capital of Moron in northern Mongolia, the Nuurstei project was found to contain a low volatile bitumous coal with moderate to high ash levels and low sulphur.