New Hope Corporation has made a binding commitment with Wesfarmers to double its interest in the Bengalla joint venture (JV) for $860 million.
New Hope currently holds a 40 per cent interest in the Bengalla coal mine in the Hunter Valley, New South Wales, which it acquired from Rio Tinto in 2015 for $US606 million.
The deal with Wesfarmers will allow New Hope to acquire up to a further 40 per cent for a possible 80 per cent in total, though the final percentage will depend on the two other participants in the Bengalla JV, Mitsui and Taipower.
New Hope managing director Shane Stephan said that the acquisition of an additional interest in Bengalla demonstrated the company’s long term commitment to the mine, as well as conveying a positive outlook for thermal coal exports.
He also said that New Hope remained committed to securing approvals for its $900 million expansion of the New Ackland coal mine in Queensland, which has suffered several setbacks.