On May 6, 2022, Sinosteel and the Ministry of Mines, Industry and Technological Development held a signing ceremony for the mining agreement of Lobe Iron Mine at the National Assembly Building in Yaoundé, capital of Cameroon. Mr. Liu Andong, General Manager of Sinosteel Group, and Mr. Li Rongting, Vice General Manager of Sinosteel Group, witnessed the signing by video connection in Beijing. Chinese Ambassador to Cameroon Wang Yingwu and Counselor Guo Jianjun attended the signing ceremony on site. Gabriel Dodo Ndoke, Minister of Mines, Industry and Technological Development of Cameroon, and Zheng Zhenghao, General Manager of Sinosteel Cameroon, signed the mining agreement on behalf of both parties.
The Lobe Iron Mine project is located in the Kribi area on the southwest coast of Cameroon, West Africa, about 17 km from the Kribi deepwater port built by China Harbor and now in operation, with abundant natural gas and water resources in the vicinity and excellent geographical conditions. Lobe Iron and Magnetite Mine holds reserves of approximately 600 million tons with low impurities. In November 2015, Sinosteel submitted an application for a mining license to the Cameroonian government and held several rounds of mining agreement negotiations with the Large Project Committee of Cameroonian Prime Minister's Office between 2017 and 2021. During this period, despite the impact of the change of government and the Covid-19 epidemic in Cameroon, repeated efforts were made until April 2022, when the Cameroonian Presidency finally approved the signing of the mining agreement. According to the needs of the implementation of the Lobe Iron Mine project, the mining agreement provides for detailed regulations on matters related to the development of the project, such as finance, financial, taxation, energy, water, forestry and land, during the period of obtaining the mining license or the renewal of the mining license, including the construction period and the production and operation period of the mine. After the signing of the mining agreement, the Government of Cameroon will grant the mining license for the Lobe Iron Mine Project.
Liu Andong said in his speech that the successful signing of the mining agreement of Lobe Iron Mine in Cameroon is an important milestone for Sinosteel Group to expand the mineral resources development in West and Central Africa after 14 years of hard work. After the signing of the project, Sinosteel Group will work with its strategic partners to build an integrated iron mine project including mining, benefication, power generation and terminal infrastructure, and strive to develop and operate it efficiently and pragmatically, making it another successful example of China-Cameroon and even China-Africa capacity cooperation. At the later stage of the project, Sinosteel will also explore local deep processing and carry out feasibility study topics of pellet ore and direct iron reduction projects in accordance with China Baowu's international business strategy.
Mr. Fu Ruilong, General Manager Assistant of Sinosteel Group, Head of Asset and Finance Department, and Head of Sinosteel Overseas witnessed the signing ceremony in Beijing. The signing ceremony in Cameroon was attended by the Minister of Mines, Industry and Technological Development of Cameroon, the governors of the central and southern regions of Cameroon, as well as representatives from Société Nationale des Hydrocarbures, Kribi Port Authority, Sonamines, Cameroon Parliament, relevant ministries and commissions of Cameroon, local governments at all levels, and the West Africa Project Department of China Harbor, etc. totaling more than 150 people.