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CORRECTED-UPDATE 1-Ghana suspends gold royalty fund's London listing -finance ministry letter

Tue, 6th Oct 2020 10:42

(Correct name of minister in para two to Charles Adu Boahen,
from Charles Abu Boahen)

ACCRA, Oct 6 (Reuters) - Ghana has suspended the $500
million listing of its gold royalty fund Agyapa Royalties in
London following concerns raised by the main opposition party
about transparency and governance, a finance ministry letter
reviewed by Reuters showed.

In an Oct. 1 letter to the special prosecutor, deputy
finance ministry Charles Adu Boahen said the government would
delay the Initial Public Offering (IPO), following criticism by
the opposition National Democratic Congress opposition party.

"It would be detrimental to proceed without receiving
approvals the green light from your office," Boahen wrote.

A finance ministry spokesman declined to comment
immediately.

Agyapa Royalties, a government-backed fund that holds equity
interests including mining royalties in the state's gold assets,
had hired banks to list on the London Stock Exchange, sources
said on Sept. 21.

Ghana wants to take advantage of the precious metal's strong
performance this year to raise $400 million-$500 million from
the IPO.

Last week the opposition National Democratic Congress called
for an independent probe into the valuation of the company's
royalty rights and has questioned its proposed registration in
Jersey, an offshore British tax haven.

In response the government said it was not seeking secrecy
would comply with international corporate governance standards.

If it goes ahead, the listing would benefit from a surge in
gold prices as the COVID-19 pandemic pushed investors into
safe-haven investments.
(Reporting by Christian Akorlie;
Writing by Hereward Holland
Editing by Bate Felix and Louise Heavens)

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