De Beers sells 50pc stake in African coal mine

De Beers is selling its 50 per cent stake in Botswana’s only coal mine to the country’s government, amid owner Anglo American’s efforts to divest ‘non-core’ assets.

De Beers holds the stake in Morupule Coal Mine (MCM) through Debswana Diamond Mining Company, a joint venture with Botswana’s government; with the mine producing 3.2 million tonnes of coal per annum.

The diamond company’s stake will be transferred to the recently formed Minerals Development Company of Botswana (MDBC), CEO of the company Paul Smith said, according to Reuters.

Smith did not reveal the price of the stake.

Anglo American announced its efforts to completely exit the coal market in Australia, selling its Australian assets following a US$5.6 billion loss. It deemed all coal assets in Australia as non-core, selling its 70 per cent stake in Foxleigh coal mine to Taurus Fund Management in April this year.

The miner also plans to exit its niobium, nickel, and phosphate operations globally. The company sold its its niobium and phosphates business to China Molybdenum for US$1.5 billion.

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