13 September 2012
Despite increased public opinion in Papua New Guinea against the proposed Solwara 1 project being pursued by Nautilus Minerals, the company was able to successfully raise C$18.6 million through the issuing of its second and final tranche of shares on the Toronto Stock Exchange recently.
In a statement released on Tuesday, the company announced that a total of over 37 million shares were issued on a non-brokered private placement arrangement first announced earlier last month. Shares were traded at C$0.90 per share as part of a capital raising initiative hoped at raising C$33.9 million, before expenses.
“The total number of issued and outstanding shares of the Company is now 234,097,865”, the company reported.
Nautilus has made an application to the Alternative Investment Market of the London Stock Exchange for its second tranche of shares to be admitted for trading.
The closing of the second tranche saw little change in the company’s major shareholding stakes, with Metalloinvest maintaining its interest at 21%, Anglo American at 11% and Mawarid Offshore Mining Limited (16.9%), a subsidiary of MB Holding LLC which is a multinational corporation engaged in areas of mineral exploration throughout the Middle East, Europe, the Asia Pacific, and other regions of the world.
Meanwhile, the lobby against the Solwara 1 project is gaining momentum with support from sections of society, including the outspoken Governor for Oro Province, Gary Juffa. He was expected to attend a public forum at the University of Papua New Guinea’s Main Lecture Theatre yesterday. The theme of the forum was “The Realities of Seabed Mining for Papua New Guinea”.
Organized by several groups including 4Massim, the Madang Indigenous Peoples Forum, ACTNow PNG, Bismarck Ramu Group, and hosted by student union groups at UPNG from coastal provinces most likely to be affected by this project, the forum was held to mobilize and educate Papua New Guineans on issues related to seabed mining.
Outspoken critic of the project and popular social media commentator, Patrick Kaiku stated in a notice that ” While attention has focused on the untold potential of mining on the seabed, there is little information on how Papua New Guineans and especially the coastal communities know about seabed mining and its implications for our way of life”. “
We envisage that two objectives will be achieved from this forum: Firstly it will initiate discussions and awareness on the issue of seabed mining in Papua New Guinea. Secondly, it will generate resource materials for the proposed national awareness drive on seabed mining in Papua New Guinea”, Mr Kaiku said.