Nickel Asia abandons Davao mining foray

Nickel Asia abandons Davao mining foray

/ 02:02 AM February 27, 2024

MANILA, Philippines  Nickel Asia Corp. (NAC), the country’s largest nickel ore producer, will no longer pursue plans to harness mining resources in Davao Oriental.

In a stock exchange filing on Monday, NAC said its letter of intent to be the sole and exclusive mining service contractor for Hallmark Mining Corp. and Austral-Asia Link Mining Corp. had been terminated “after the parties failed to agree on the commercial terms” in relation to the mineral production and sharing agreements (MPSAs).

Under the MPSA, the government shares in the production of the contractor, whether in kind or in value, as owner of the materials while the contractor provides the financing, technology, management and personnel for the mining project.


NAC first disclosed in February last year its intention to explore two mine sites in the city of Mati and the towns of San Isidro and Gov. Generoso, all located in Davao Oriental province.


READ: Nickel Asia sees better earnings in 2024

It also aimed to conduct a feasibility study to determine the economic and technical viability of building a high pressure acid leach (HPAL) or equivalent mineral processing plant. An HPAL facility extracts nickel and cobalt from laterite ore bodies.

Hallmark holds MPSA No. 196-2004-XI spanning 4,999.71 hectares (ha) of mining site in Mati and San Isidro while MPSA No. 197-2004-XI of Austral-Asia holds 5,000 ha in Mati and Gov. Generoso.

Both Hallmark and Austral-Asia are under the management of Asiaticus Management Corp. They currently control the Pujada Nickel Project in the northeastern section of the Pujada Peninsula.

READ: Nickel Asia mulling over partnerships for Davao projects

It straddles the barangays of Macambol and Cabuaya in Mati and is within the ancestral domain of the Mandaya indigenous people. Despite this, NAC said the latest development would not adversely affect its current and future development pipeline.


At present, the mining company plans to start two mining projects in Bulanjao, Palawan and Manicani, a small island in Leyte Gulf in Eastern Samar this year.

NAC is targeting an annual production of about 4 million wet metric tons (WMT) from the Bulanjao mine and around 2 million WMT from the Manicani mine.

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NAC operates the Coral Bay and Taganito HPAL plants in Palawan and Surigao del Norte provinces. The firm operates various mine sites through its subsidiaries and has a growing interest in renewable energy. INQ

TAGS: Business, Davao Oriental, Nickel Asia Corp.

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