TORONTO – Freeport-McMoRan Inc, the world’s largest publicly traded copper miner, is “on a path” to get a new mining deal with Indonesia this year for its giant Grasberg mine, Chief Financial Officer Kathleen Quirk said on Thursday.
The Arizona-based company resumed copper concentrate exports from Grasberg, the world’s second-biggest copper mine, in April after a 15-week outage related to a government dispute over mining rights. Freeport had planned to ramp up production, which was cut by around two-thirds during the outage.
Freeport shares gained 2.9 percent to $12.06 on Thursday. Jakarta halted Freeport’s copper concentrate exports in January, under new rules that require miners to adopt a special license, pay new taxes and royalties, divest a 51 percent stake in their operations and relinquish arbitration rights.
Freeport, whose current contract runs until 2021 with two 10-year extensions, will only agree to a license accompanied by an investment stability agreement that replicates current legal and fiscal certainty, Quirk said.
“We think we’re on a path to be able to get that resolved during this year and that’s our top priority,” Quirk said via webcast from a Deutsche Bank conference.
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