Berau Mine May Cease Production

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  • Nathaniel Rothschild. mirror.co.uk

    Nathaniel Rothschild. mirror.co.uk

    TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – A battle of control at coal miner Asia Resource Minerals Plc (ARMS) poses risks of production halt at the coal mine of its subsidiary, PT Berau Coal Energy Tbk (BRAU).

    One of ARMS co-founders Nathaniel Rothschild is currently competing with Asia Coal Energy Ventures (ACE), a subsidiary of Sinar Mas Group, to acquire the rights to control the Indonesian coal miner.

    "We see that a takeover by ACE is the best option to secure the company's future," ARMS management said in a written statement on Monday as quoted by Reuters.

    Asia Resource is an Indonesian coal miner listed in the London Stock Exchange. It was established by UK financier Rothschild and Indonesian conglomerates, Samin Tan and the Bakrie Group under its previous name Bumi Plc.

    Asia Resource was established in March last year after the Bakrie Group officially parted ways with Bumi Plc after a long feud between the shareholders.

    Boardroom disputes and falling coal prices had sent the company's share price down by almost 90 percent since it went public.

    The London-listed company needs to quickly restructure its debt as a U$450-million bond comes due on July 8. The company has lost control of its Berau subsidiary, the center of its mining assets in Indonesia.

    Although a number of mining activities have to be halted for the time being, ARMS claims they have enough funds to settle debts.

    REUTERS | URSULA FLORENE SONIA