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Friday, March 22 2019 @ 01:49 AM UTC

Inmet arranges $500-million equity financing; proceeds to be used for Panama copper project

Gold & MiningBy: THE CANADIAN PRESS - Inmet Mining Corp. has arranged a $500-million equity financing through Ellington Investments Pte. Ltd., a subsidiary of a Singapore-based investment company with holdings in Asia and Latin America. Net proceeds from the agreement will be used by Inmet for the development of the Toronto-based mining company's Cobre Panama copper, gold and molybdenum project in Panama. The deal is the latest evidence of renewed interest in copper, a base metal used in a wide variety of industrial and construction purposes, and more relaxed credit conditions. Inmet's agreement calls for Ellington to buy about 9.3 million subscription receipts at just over $54 each. The receipts can be exchanged on a one-for-one basis for shares of Inmet, or about 14 per cent of its outstanding common stock, after certain conditions are met. Ellington will have a right to nominate one member to Inmet's board of directors, so long as Ellington or its affiliates own at least five per cent of Inmet. Ellington or other members of the Singapore-based Temasek group agreed to hold their Inmet shares for at least a year, subject to certain conditions. Temasek Holdings is an Asia investment company with about a portfolio worth about US$119 billion. It has 12 affiliates and offices in Asia and Latin America. The investing group will have the opportunity to maintain their proportional stake in Inmet if it issues more stock.

Editor's Comment: While gold mining in Panama might be sexy, the real money is in this copper deposit, which when fully developed could be the largest in the world. The potential positive economic impact for Panama is substantial, both in the short term and over the long haul. When I read this article it says "Inmet is making arrangements to raise $500 million dollars which will be used to develop a copper mine in Panama." My ears hear that as "the more than half a billion dollars raised by Inmet will be spent in Panama to develop a copper mine, creating jobs, growing the economy, increasing Foreign Direct Investment," etc. In other words, Inmet will raise this money outside of Panama and then spend it here. To that I say, "thank you very much." Sure, there are alway environmental concerns when dealing with the potential for a new copper mine located in what used to be relatively pristine mountain jungle terrain. However I say those concerns can be effectively managed and addressed, environmental impact can be mitigated, and over the long haul (decades) the topography can be returned to an environmentally friendly state. The holes can be filled, the topsoil replaced, and the jungle will move right back in after the copper has been removed. There are ways to do this in a responsible manner. Anyway, the bottom line is that Inment will raise and spend an additional $500 million dollars in Panama. Look at it this way - that's equal to about 10% of the cost of the expansion of the Panama Canal. It's a good thing, if you own a calculator.

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