1 Nov 2005

Falconbridge expected to respond to offer from French state over New Caledonia project

2:28 pm on 1 November 2005

The Canadian nickel mining firm Falconbridge is expected to respond shortly to an offer from the French state to underwrite its planned project in the north of New Caledonia.

The French newspaper, Le Figaro, reports its sources as saying Falconbridge is being offered 719 million US dollars in taxbreaks, and 515 million dollars in bank guarantees.

The company has promised to begin construction of the Koniambo project by the end of the year, but costs have reportedly overrun to 2.7 billion US dollars.

The project is a partnership with the northern provincial government in New Caledonia.