South Africa's Wesizwe Platinum secures $877 million Chinese funding

South Africa's platinum explorer Wesizwe Platinum Ltd Friday secured project financing to the tune of 6 billion South African Rand ($877 million) from Chinese non-ferrous mining major Jinchuan Mining Group Ltd (JNMC), and the China-Africa Development Fund (CADF).

The current deal, which is China's biggest investment in the South African mining sector, is also the latest instance of China's insatiable appetite for resources. Locking resources around the world is essential if the world's second-largest economy is to continue to grow.

JSE-listed Wesizwe Platinum is an explorer and developer of platinum group metals (PGM). The company's core assets include the high quality platinum projects on the Bushveld complex near Rustenburg in the North West province of South Africa.

Since 2004, Wesizwe has been pursuing an extensive exploration programme in the area involving hundreds of boreholes and deflections covering 172,400 metres of drilling. The company's attributable resources of PGM in the measured, indicated, and inferred categories are close to 10 million ounces.

Its Frischgewaagd-Ledig complex has the potential to produce around 350,000 ounces of PGM a year.

Under the agreement, JNMC and CADF would inject $227 million in the equity of Wesizwe Platinum by subscribing to 732.5 million shares or 45-per cent stake in the company.