OZ Minerals not defaulting

OZ Minerals' request to halt trading of its shares while it seeks a deadline extension to financing is not an indication the company is unable to pay its debts, OZ Minerals group manager external affairs Matthew Foran told MINING DAILY.

OZ Minerals’ request to halt trading of its shares while it seeks a deadline extension to financing is not an indication the company is unable to pay its debts, OZ Minerals group manager external affairs Matthew Foran told MINING DAILY.

“When we put the trading hold in place it was largely the result of the fact we were seeking an extension to a negotiating deadline to put our various project finance facilities together into one corporate facility,” he said.

“The company wasn’t in default of its loans.”

According to Foran, OZ Minerals believed it had successfully negotiated an extension but struck problems at the last minute which led to the trading halt.

“As of Thursday (Nov 27) we were quite confident that we had secured the agreement of the syndicate members, but unfortunately we had one bank who, while they agreed to the extension, had put caveats on it so that we’d deemed it to be unworkable,” Foran said.

“So that’s what we went into the trading halt focused on.”

As of this morning the negotiations for the extension were still taking place.

“There’s been quite a bit of negotiation over the weekend and progress made,” Foran said.

“It’s still a work in progress at the moment, but we’d hope to have this concluded during the day.”

The original request from OZ Minerals was for a trading halt until Tuesday December 2, but the company will provide information whatever the outcome of today’s negotiations, Foran said.

“We have to give some guidance to the market prior to it opening tomorrow,” he said.

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