China Guangdong Nuclear Offers $990 Million for Kalahari
Comment of the Day

December 08 2011

Commentary by David Fuller

China Guangdong Nuclear Offers $990 Million for Kalahari

This article by Jesse Riseborough for Bloomberg may of interest to subscriber. Here is a section:
Guangdong Nuclear "is committed to supporting development of new supply capacity in the natural uranium market," it said. The company "is at the forefront of China's diversification from its reliance on fossil fuel sources."

The state-owned company had until today to say whether it will make an offer or seek an extension of this deadline, Kalahari said Nov. 10. The offer is at a 16 percent premium to the average price for six months prior to March 4, the last day prior to the first announcement by China Guangdong on a possible offer for Kalahari, it said.

Kalahari directors hold about 2.2 percent of the stock and Guangdong Nuclear has secured non-binding letters of intent for a further 3.9 percent stake, it said.

The price compares with an initial March proposal by Guangdong Nuclear of 290 pence and a reduced May offer of 270 pence that was barred by the U.K. Takeovers Panel. Kalahari said Nov. 10 that the companies were in talks for an offer of 243.55 pence.

Chinese Reactors
The acquisition will be the second-biggest Chinese takeover of a foreign mining company, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The nation began its first commercial nuclear plant in 1994 and now has the highest number of atomic facilities being built, figures from the World Nuclear Association show.

China, the world's biggest energy user, has 13 generators in commercial operation and 28 under construction, according to the Ministry of Environmental Protection. China may have more than 100 atomic reactors by 2020, it said in June.

Extract is seeking to develop Husab at a cost of about $1.7 billion with a mine that may last for more than 20 years. The company raised its estimate of reserves at the project in August by 37 percent to 320 million pounds of uranium oxide.

Rio Tinto Group owns 14 percent of Extract and 11.5 percent of Kalahari. It also has the Rossing uranium mine next to the Husab deposit.

David Fuller's view Uranium's nascent recovery was disrupted by the Fukushima nuclear accident earlier this year. The knee jerk reaction among countries such as Germany has been to announce the closure of nuclear plants. Japan continues to debate how nuclear will be replaced in its economy. The relevant shares initially pulled back sharply and have been ranging, some with a downward bias, for the last few months.

Meanwhile, consolidation is an important theme in the industry. Rio Tinto appears likely to acquire Hathor Exploration. China's takeover of Kalahari Minerals suggests it is also using this as an opportunity to pick up resources at bargain basement prices. China did exactly the same following the 2008 crash.

Kalahari Minerals and Extract Resources have been among the better performing uranium shares. Kalahari Minerals remains in a relatively consistent step sequence medium-term uptrend. It is currently rallying from the lower side of the yearlong range and clear downward dynamic would be required to check current scope for additional upside. Extract Resources has a relatively similar pattern over the last year.

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