Chinese juggernaut seeks WA gold sector investment

China’s leading gold producer Zhaojin International Mining has formed a joint venture (JV) with Perth-based PCF Capital Group to invest in Western Australia’s gold mining sector.

Western Australian Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Johnston believes there’s “never been a better time to invest” with the Australian gold price hitting record levels this month.

PCF, an independent corporate advisory firm, will identify opportunities and provide advice to Zhaojin on potential transactions.

Zhaojin is one of China’s largest gold smelting companies with a market capitalisation of $US5 billion ($7.4 billion).

The company integrates exploration, mining, mineral processing, smelting and market operations into one, receiving grants for 48 patents and 29 awards for technological achievements in 2016 alone.

“Western Australia’s innovative and globally competitive gold industry is a key component of our reputation as a destination of choice for resource investment,” Johnston, attending the Golden Gateway JV signing ceremony, said.

Western Australia places great value on its economic relationship with its Asian neighbours, particularly its biggest trading partner China, according to the state’s Asian Engagement Minister Peter Tinley.

Chinese companies have direct interests in projects across several commodities, including iron ore, liquefied natural gas, gold, lithium and manganese.

“Attracting foreign investment that helps to create and support jobs in Western Australia’s resources sector, as well as other sectors of the state’s economy, is a key priority of our strategic engagement with Asia,” Tinley concluded.

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