KEFI Gold and Copper plc (LON:KEFI), the gold and copper exploration and development company with projects in the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has provided an update for the Company’s Tulu Kapi Gold Mines Share Company joint venture project in Ethiopia.
Progress in Ethiopia over the past month has remained on track, with further advancement on the multi-party project financing activities and the early development works. Signing of the umbrella financing agreement remains on course for this quarter, with full construction to commence at the end of the current wet season.
This week an all-parties meeting of the Tulu Kapi Gold Project finance syndicate re-confirmed this plan to senior officers of the Ethiopian Ministry of Mines.
Highlights of the past month
Key initial development activities have continued.
The financing syndicate’s umbrella agreement is currently being formalised with a view to execution next month. The underlying detailed agreements with each of the individual counterparties are to be executed following the satisfaction of the few remaining conditions precedent, which themselves are standard for a transaction of this nature and predominantly relate to expected Government commitments, including successful installation of increased security and confirmations of various other Project and banks’ protections.
The last month’s Project activities included:
· Receiving a positive comprehensive independent report on safety conditions and recommendations. Conclusions included that TKGM’s proposed risk-staged Project launch is appropriate and lays the security foundation for long term successful operation;
· Completing upgrades to the exploration camp for initial construction crews;
· Completing Front End Engineering and Design for procurement of the process plant;
· Updating pricing for mining services and the process plant. These will shortly be independently reviewed, but the Company does not believe there will be any material changes to previously reported Project economics;
· Electricity supply equipment arriving in Ethiopia ahead of installation;
· Establishing the Tulu Kapi Charitable Endowment to go beyond the activities of the Community Development Fund required under the local regulations for launch in May; and
· Setting aside the funds for implementation of the first stage resettlement compensation.
Harry Anagnostaras-Adams, Executive Chairman of KEFI Gold and Copper, commented:
“We continue to step up activities for signing the financing syndicate umbrella agreement next month, enabling full construction to commence from October, at the end of the wet season.
“This week an all-parties meeting of the Tulu Kapi Gold Project finance syndicate confirmed the plan and timetable to senior officers of the Ministry of Mines, with the recently announced KEFI fund-raisings forming part of the full finance plan for development.
“KEFI has been able to pivot onto a much more positive direction since December 2021 due to geopolitics, regulatory changes and exploration results. We now have three advanced projects in two countries that are now overtly pro-development – a more positive and less risky position than KEFI has confronted for many years.”