Chinese set Feb 2 deadline on Kalahari bid


[] — CHINA Guangdong Nuclear Power Corp (CGNPC) has set a February 2 deadline on its offer for Kalahari Minerals, which could trigger a $2.2bn bid for Kalahari’s Australian subsidiary Extract Resources Ltd as early as March.

Under a deal announced in December, the Chinese state-owned firm has said it would launch an A$8.65 a share offer for Extract Resources within four weeks of receiving acceptances to 50% of Kalahari.

Extract’s shares last traded at A$8.47, 2% below the proposed offer, reflecting the uncertain timeframe for the bid.

CGNPC, seeking new sources of uranium supply, wants Kalahari for its 42.7% stake in Extract, which is developing the Husab uranium project in Namibia.

Husab is potentially the second-largest uranium mine in the world.

Key to any deal will be global miner Rio Tinto and Japan’s Itochu Corp, which together effectively own one-third of Extract through their stakes in the company and its parent, Kalahari.

Rio Tinto has held talks with Extract on combining the Husab project with its neighbouring Rossing uranium mine.

Extract directors reiterated they are “continuing to review all available opportunities maximise shareholder value”.