LONDON (Alliance News) - Avocet Mining PLC on Tuesday said a mining convention has been signed in respect of the Tri-K project in Guinea and said the court hearing to determine the legality of the seizure of a gold shipment from the Inata mine in Burkina Faso in October has been postponed.
Avocet said a mining convention was signed on Tri-K on Monday, providing approval for Avocet's agreement to bring Morocco's Managem SA into the Tri-K gold project in Guinea.
Managem is set to take a 40% interest in the Tri-K project for USD4.0 million, and Managem will then undertake a USD10.0 million work programme on the project. Once this programme completes, Managem will be entitled to increase its stake in the project to 70%.
The agreement remains subject to approval from Avocet shareholders at a meeting due to be held on Thursday, after which the deal will be submitted to the Guinean National Assembly for ratification. Avocet said it hopes this ratification will come through by January, though the precise date will be subject to the parliamentary agenda.
Elsewhere, Avocet said the court hearing on the gold seized from its Inata mine has been suspended.
Avocet had a gold shipment containing around 1,400 ounces seized by bailiffs on October 7, under a legal claim made by ex-workers of Societe des Mines de Belahouro (SMB), the owner of the Inata mine, which Avocet operates.
Avocet has since been battling to have the gold returned, but a hearing scheduled to take place in Ouagadougou on Monday to determine the legality of the seizure has been postponed for at least two weeks.
Avocet said it remains hopeful a settlement will be reached with the ex-employees which will allow for the gold to be released.
Shares in Avocet were untraded on Tuesday morning, having last traded at 51.00 pence.
By Sam Unsted; firstname.lastname@example.org; @SamUAtAlliance
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