Chinese consortium buys Glencore stake in Peru copper mine for $5.8bn

Monday 14 April 2014 08.01
Strong Chinese demand for metals has had a big influence on global prices
Strong Chinese demand for metals has had a big influence on global prices

A Chinese consortium has agreed to buy Glencore Xstrata's stake in the Las Bambas copper mine project in Peru for $5.85 billion (€4.22bn).

China Minmetals said Monday that a consortium led by one of its subsidiaries MMG has agreed to buy Glencore Xstrata Plc's stake in the Las Bambas copper mine project in Peru for $5.85 billion.

MMG, a subsidiary of state-owned mining giant China Minmetals, led the deal, which it called it the largest overseas acquisition by China's metal mining industry. 

"The Las Bambas project is in line with the long-term strategy of Minmetals and MMG," Minmetals President Zhou Zhongshu said in a statement. 

"(The acquisition) will further optimise the mining asset composition of Minmetals".

Demand for metals and other raw materials to fuel growth in China, the world's second-largest economy, has become a key influence on global commodities markets.

The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter, pending approval by governments and shareholders, Minmetals said. 

The statement also said that lenders including the China Development Bank, ICBC and Bank of China will provide funding support for the takeover.

Peru is the world's second biggest copper producer, and Las Bambas is located in the Apurimac region in the country's southeast. China is the world's biggest copper importer.

Glencore Xstrata also announced the deal in a statement yesterday. 

The consortium is "owned 62.5% by MMG Limited, 22.5% by GUOXIN International Investment Corporation Limited and 15% by CITIC Metal Co.", the Anglo-Swiss mining giant said.

"Today's announcement demonstrates our commitment to maximising value for our shareholders," Ivan Glasenberg, CEO of Glencore, said.

Earlier this month, Chinese state-owned grain giant COFCO announced, pending regulatory and shareholder approvals, that it would take a majority stake in the agricultural commodities subsidiary of Hong Kong-based Noble Group.

COFCO had announced a deal in late February to buy 51% of Netherlands-based Nidera, a trader of grains and soybeans among other agricultural commodities and active in Brazil and Argentina.