OOC to Become Strategic Investor in Canada's BlackRock Metals Inc [Oman News Agency]Al Bawaba Ltd.
Muscat, Dec 17 (ONA)--- Oman Oil Company (OOC) has announced its first venture in Canada through an investment in BlackRock Metals Inc., a Quebec based mining company. The investment will be for an equity stake in BlackRock Metals Inc. of up to maximum of (25%) upon the achievement of certain project milestones and provides for OOC off-take rights subject to finalization of negotiation of off-take terms. An investment agreement was signed between the two companies in Muscat today by Nasser bin Khamis al-Jashmi, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Oil and Gas and OOC Board Chairman and Sean Cleary, Blackrock Metals' Chairman, according to OOC press release. The BlackRock Project is located in Qubec, Canada (approximately 700 km north of Montreal) and consists of the development and construction of an open pit mine for the extraction of iron ore with vanadium and titanium. Commenting on the occasion, Nasser bin Khamis al-Jashmi, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Oil and Gas and OOC Board Chairman said: "We are pleased to announce our latest investment and first in Canada, which is in line with the Company's strategy to expand and diversify its growing investment portfolio locally and internationally. Additionally, OOC's ability to off-take a proportion of BlackRock's concentrates will support metal-based industrial projects in the Sultanate". According to Blackrock Metals' Chairman, Sean Cleary, it is anticipated that the Middle East, and the Sultanate in particular, will play an important role in the company's development and future growth. "With its strategic stakeholder base, including OOC, there are many opportunities in the global metals sector, which Blackrock Metals is uniquely positioned to acquire, develop and bring towards production and profitability. This agreement represents a valuable opening to fast track that growth," Cleary said. It is worth mentioning that OOC is a company wholly owned by the Government of the Sultanate of Oman. The company was established in 1996 to give the Government a vehicle for pursuing investment opportunities in the energy sector, both inside and outside Oman. OOC has managed, in a relatively short period of time, to contribute to the development of many important projects in energy and energy related areas. Through this participation, OOC plays a key role in the Sultanate's efforts to diversify the Omani economy and help generate Omani and foreign private sector investment. Local and international investments of OOC include (32) projects covering the areas of exploration and production, mining, refining and petrochemical, oil products marketing, electricity generation and marine shipping sectors. It is also worth noting that Blackrock Metals is a privately financed Canadian mining company with a (100%) owned iron ore property in one of the most prolific mining regions in the world. BlackRock Metals high-performance corporate culture is guided by its core values of putting people first, operating on budget in a safe environmentally sound manner and maintaining a high standard of social responsibility and social acceptance of its projects. --- Ends/ KH