Troubled potash mine developer Sirius Minerals (LON:SXX) has entered into a ten-year supply and distribution agreement with Qatar Chemical and Petrochemical Marketing and Distribution Company (Muntajat) amid doubts about the fate of its ambitious mining project in Britain’s Moors National Park.
The deal secures distribution of POLY4, the company’s Woodsmith
project output, into Africa (except Nigeria and Egypt), Australia, New
Zealand and certain remaining Middle-Eastern and Asian territories, Sirius
The future of the company and its huge fertilizer project beneath the park were thrown into doubt last month, after Sirius’ $3.8 billion funding plan failed.
Last week, the mine developer had to let go about 300
workers in ore der to slash costs and preserve cash while it carries out a strategic
review of the project and alternative funding options for it.
The Woodsmith mine, poised to be
one of the world’s largest in terms of the amount of resources extracted,
is set to generate an initial 10 million tonnes per year of polyhalite, a form
of potash that is used in plant fertilizers. Output is forecast to reach 13
million tonnes in 2026.
The operation involves sinking
two 1.5km shafts below a national park on the North York Moors and is expected
to create about 1,800 jobs during construction, as well as 1,000 permanent
positions once it opens in May 2021.
The ore will be extracted via the
two mine shafts and transported to Teesside on the world’s longest underground
conveyor belt, via a 37km-underground tunnel. It will then be granulated at a
materials handling facility, with the majority being exported to overseas
More to come…