Steinmetz and Guinea settle bitter mining dispute

Beny Steinmetz  photo: Aviv Hofi

"Production and export of iron ore will be expedited and this is a win-win situation for everyone,” the Israeli billionaire told "Bloomberg."

Israeli tycoon Beny Steinmetz has ended a bitter dispute with Guinea. "Bloomberg" reports that the settlement with the West African country was brokered by former French President Nicolas Sarkozy. The seven-year-old dispute centered around one of the world’s richest mineral deposits.

After months of secret negotiations, Steinmetz’s BSG Resources Ltd. and Guinea's President Alpha Conde have dropped the allegations of corruption leveled against each other and withdrawn for arbitration over the Simandou iron-ore project.

Guinea has also agreed to partner with mining tycoon Mick Davis, "Bloomberg" adds and he will develop the Zogota iron-ore mine once the disputes have been settled. The reconciliation puts Steinmetz, BSGR and Davis in prime position to lead the development of Guinea’s massive iron-ore reserves.

Steinmetz told "Bloomberg," “A good agreement is much better than any war. We were enemies. Now we are friends and partners with the Guinean government. We have both put aside the past and BSGR and its employees and advisers have been vindicated."

He continued, "We are all really pleased with the situation. Guinea wants to work and they see us as the pioneers of the iron-ore situation, because nobody else has picked it up. Production and export of iron ore will be expedited and this is a win-win situation for everyone.”

Under the terms of the settlement, "Bloomberg" reports that BSGR has relinquished the rights to Simandou and Zogota, and Davis will develop the smaller deposit.

The agreement gives a new lease of life to BSGR, which went into administration last year in order to protect itself from the outcome of the litigation and arbitration with Guinea.

Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on February 25, 2019

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2019

Beny Steinmetz  photo: Aviv Hofi
Beny Steinmetz photo: Aviv Hofi
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