Banro Corporation to put up DRC’s Namoya gold mine for sale

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Banro Corporation is looking to put up DRC’s Namoya gold mine for sale. This move has been prompted by repeat attacks from armed rebels. The firm also pointed out lack of government support to keep staff on as well as securing their assets.

According to local reports, Banro had a challenging run that nearly ended in bankruptcy three years ago. The government had confiscated its licenses during a civil war that killed 5m people, returning them in 2002 as the conflict drew to a close.

In the following years, the company built its Twangiza and Namoya mines. The latter has been since then the target of multiple attacks, which led the cash-strapped company to halt operations in 2017.

A Canadian court approved a rescue plan in early 2018, enabling the company’s main creditors — Chinese state-controlled Baiyin International Investments and Connecticut-based Gramercy Funds Management — to become its senior shareholders.

The move allowed Banro to resume operations. However, this was short-lived with the onste of fresh attacks, including the kidnapping of four employees in July last year. The company ended up signing an agreement with the leader of the Mai Mai militia, allowing artisanal local miners to temporarily extract gold from Namoya’s site in exchange for the release of the abducted workers, who were held for several weeks before being released.

Last month, Banro sold its Twangiza mine to minority shareholder Baiyin International Investments of China for just US $1, as the asset’s liabilities exceeded projected revenue..

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