Chinese gold miner’s Arctic ambitions face chill in Canada – by SHUJI NAKAYAMA and SHUNSUKE TABETA (Nikkei Asian Review – September 17, 2020)

NEW YORK/BEIJING — As global competition for the Arctic’s rich resources grows, the proposed acquisition of a Canadian mining company by China’s Shandong Gold Group has emerged as a flashpoint in the countries’ deteriorating ties.

“We plan to become one of the world’s top five producers of gold by 2025,” Shandong Gold Chairman Chen Yumin said in August as he signed a strategic partnership with Bank of China. The deal provided the mining giant with a 30 billion yuan ($4.44 billion) credit line to help finance overseas acquisitions.

The state-owned miner supervised by Shandong Province has ties with the Chinese Communist Party dating to the Japanese occupation. It operates a large gold mine in Shandong and became China’s top producer of the metal in 2017.

The company also is developing new mines abroad in Argentina and elsewhere. Shandong Gold’s global output in 2019 totaled 48 tons, placing it among the world’s top 10 players. Its revenue that year was 76.8 billion yuan.

Shandong Gold has turned its focus toward Canada, announcing plans in May to acquire Canadian miner TMAC Resources.

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