8 Nov 2005

France gives nickel firm six months before New Caledonia decision - report

9:39 am on 8 November 2005

Reports from France say the government has given the Canadian mining company Falconbridge an extra six months to decide whether to build a giant factory to process nickel on New Caledonia.

The French newspaper Les Echos reports Falconbridge has until the end of June next year to decide whether to go ahead with the construction.

Under an agreement signed at the French finance ministry in Paris in 1998, Falconbridge had until the end of this year to undertake to invest in the factory.

Otherwise, shares in the Koniambo project would be returned to the French state-owned mining firm, Eramet.