3 Nov 2008

South Korea company opens nickel plant in partnership with New Caledonia company

5:55 am on 3 November 2008

The South Korea steelmaker giant, Posco, will today open a nickelplant set up in partnership with SMSP, which is the nickel company of the mainly pro-independence northern province in New Caledonia.

The inauguration will be attended by delegates from New Caledonia to mark the milestone in economic partnership.

Our Noumea correspondent, Claudine Wery, explains that SMSP has a majority stake in the plant while in return Posco has access to the nickel resource owned by SMSP.

"SMSP, which belongs to the pro-independence Kanaks, has a majority in the capital of the project. It retains 51% but gave up in exchange 49% of all its nickel mines to POSCO, except the Koniambo deposit. Kanaks only took possession in the nickel industry in 1990, and their ascension is pretty spectacular in this industry."