10 Sep 2007

Huge New Caledonia nickel project inches closer

7:40 pm on 10 September 2007

Two out of three key players have now approved the latest plan for the northern New Caledonia Koniambo nickel project.

The minority stakeholder, Xstrata of Switzerland, commissioned a review into the project last year over concerns about cost, and will make a decision next month.

But the majority shareholder, SMSP has just given its approval, while the Koniambo board had backed it earlier.

A SMSP spokesperson, Dominique Nacci, says it is satisfied with the new version of the development.

"The SMSP board of directors met in Noumea last Friday. Amongst a certain number of points that have been reviewed by the board, two important resolutions regarding the construction of the plant have been endorsed by all the members. SMSP will contribute to the cost of construction of the north plant."

Dominique Nacci says SMSP will pay up to half of the construction costs.