Troubled copper producer CuDeco Limited is staying tight-lipped about allegations of non-payment of staff at its flagship Rocklands project, 15km from Cloncurry.
Rocklands has been shut down since August 31 and concerned residents and employees, who did not want to be named, told the North West Star the employees were being paid in a sporadic fashion.
They also say a lack of communication from the company since the mining operations shut down has left them feeling abandoned.
The North West Star have contacted CuDeco on many occasions with no response forthcoming and Mayor of Cloncurry Greg Campbell was still waiting to hear from the company’s chairman, Peter Hutchison.
The company did however release a Financing and Corporate Update on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) on November 16 where they said they were still optimistic about re-opening though they could give no specific date.
The company said it had completed its comprehensive plan for financial restructuring.
CuDeco said it had completed an important preventative maintenance program it believes “will provide more consistent and reliable production from the processing plant into the future” and had also identified “significant improvements in operating efficiency for small capital outlay”.
CuDeco chair Peter Hutchison told the ASX this extended suspension was “unfortunate”.
“With the assistance of our major shareholders, we move forward with optimism and expectation that the Rocklands Project will be able to deliver for the benefit of all shareholders,” Mr Hutchison said.
“We remain focused on delivering economic benefits for the local community; security of employment for our valuable staff; and creating value initiatives for our shareholders over the long term.”
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CuDeco hope to raise $11.75m in share placements which will be used to repay debts of $6m and the balance for working capital to resume mining and processing operations.
CuDeco have also signed a term sheet for the refinancing of existing Convertible Notes with the Valuestone Group, that will provide an additional $5.5m this month subject to shareholder approval and hope to rights $12-20m next year through a rights issue.
CuDeco said it had received commitments from its major lenders to support the Company and re-negotiate their existing facilities.
“Once the negotiations are completed, and planning finalised for the rights issue, the Company believes it will be well placed to finalise its financial statements for the six months ended 31 December 2017 and the year ended 30 June 2018, which will allow the company’s shares to recommence trading,” Mr Hutchison said.