6:00 PM Sydney, Australia – Stocks in Australia rallied and traded higher. Aberdeen plans to start a real estate-focused fund. Asia Iron gets regulator approvals to sell stake to China based CCMDIL. Iluka Resources’ zircon production surges. AngloGold’s Tropicana gold project gets environmental approval.
Stocks in Australia rallied through the day and closed higher. The ASX 200 Index gained 1.04% or 45.30 to close at 4,403.60 in Sydney today.
The Reserve Bank of Australia clarified that local inflation data followed by the results of stress tests on Europe’s banks, will determine whether it will resume the G-20’s most aggressive round of interest rate increases.
“The important question for the board when it meets next would be whether the new information available would materially change the medium-term outlook for inflation,” the bank said in minutes of the meeting held on July 6, released in Sydney today.
Aberdeen Property Investors, the real estate arm of Aberdeen Asset Management Plc, is in talks to start a fund to invest in Asia Pacific property funds to capitalize on the region’s long-term growth prospects.
“Aberdeen Property Investors will seek to raise about $300 million and start the fund in a few months. Asia will be better positioned due to the stability of the financial systems and the strength of the underlying economies’, said Stockholm-based Jon Lekander who helps oversee the fund as head of indirect property at Aberdeen.
Asia Iron Holdings Ltd, a subsidiary of Sinom Investments Ltd of Hong Kong, has received approvals from China and Australia regulators for the issue of new shares to Chongqing Chonggang Minerals Development Investments Ltd.
Korean Gas Corp, the world’s biggest importer of LNG, expects to purchase 1.5 million tons of LNG annually from Chevron Corp’s proposed Wheatstone project over as long as 20 years. The company recently signed an initial accord to buy the supplies from Wheatstone. Korean Gas has also agreed to acquire a 5% stake in the Australian gas venture, Chevron’s local unit said today.
Chevron, the second-largest U.S. oil company, is targeting a final decision in 2011 on whether to proceed with the Wheatstone project. The Korea Gas deal adds further momentum to the planned development, said John Gass, President of Chevron Global Gas in a statement today.
Perth-based Iluka Resources Ltd, the biggest zircon producer, said second quarter mineral sands sales rose 85% after demand surged in Asia, Europe, and North America. Revenue, before hedging, was A$229 million from A$ 124 million a year ago. Zircon production surged 55% to 104,700 tons, the company said today in a statement.
Australia-based Paladin Energy said uranium production more than doubled in the latest quarter and forecast output of 7 million pounds in 2011. The miner also said that it has signed a contract with an Asian utility to deliver about 1.5 million pounds of triuranium octoxide (U308) between 2011 and 2015.
For the full year the miner reported a 60% jump in production to 4.3 million pounds and forecasts a 62% increase in 2011 as volumes ramp up in Malawi.
Forte Energy has reported a maiden JORC (Joint Ore Reserves Committee) Code compliant estimate for its 100%-owned Bir En Nar uranium project in Mauritania. The resource, which was independently estimated and verified by Coffey Mining Pty Ltd, comprises an indicated and inferred resource if 1.33 million tons grading 704 ppm U308 or 2 million pounds of contained U308.
Cue Energy Resources Ltd signed binding joint venture agreements with Woodside on the 389-P exploration permit in the Carnarvon Basin in offshore Western Australia.
Woodside will obtain a 65% interest in the permit by committing to pay Cue Energy back its costs of $5 million, pay 100% cost of acquiring 1440 square kilometer of new seismic data, pay 100% cost of reprocessing existing 3D seismic surveys and merging these with new data, and pay 100% of the cost of first exploration well in the permit.
Ferraussays Union Park Co, a wholly-owned subsidiary of China Railway Materials Commercial Corp has exercised its right to subscribe for 3 million additional Ferraus shares.
North Queensland Metals Ltd, the subject of a takeover battle between Conquest Mining Ltd and Heemskirk Consolidated Ltd, has recorded a net profit of $4.5 million in fiscal 2010, the company said. The result for the year to June 30 is 19% down on last year’s figure of $5.6 million after exploration, impairment, and corporate costs hit $2.7 million, contributing to its poor performance.
The private equity owners of Perth-based Talison Lithium have agreed to merge the company with Toronto-listed Salares Lithium.
Apollo Consolidated entered into an agreement with unlisted explorer Aspire Minerals Pty Ltd of Australia to make offers of options to acquire a 90% interest in over 3,000 square kilometers of highly prospective greenstone terrain in northern and central Cote d Ivoire.