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Chatham Rock Phosphate [NZX: CRP], which is developing a project to mine phosphate from the sea floor for use as fertiliser, is planning a rights issue for existing shareholders in March, and expects to list on London's AIM market after several UK investors signalled they would back the venture.
The company will make "a very attractively priced rights issue to existing shareholders" on March 14, which will be tradable and renounceable, it said in a statement. That comes after managing director Chris Castle met with several investment groups in the UK who indicated their interest in investing in Chatham Rock via a private placement, subject to the firm taking a secondary listing in the UK.
"Accordingly the CRP board has agreed to proceed with the AIM listing process, which is expected to take only two to three months to complete (as there is no associated public offering)," it said.
In December, the company was granted a 20-year mining permit to extract phosphate nodules from an 820 square kilometre area of the Chatham Rise under the Crown Minerals Act, the first step in securing approval to embark on its plan.
Chatham Rock still needs a marine consent from the Environmental Protection Authority under new law governing New Zealand's 200 nautical mile exclusive economic zone. It has yet to lodge an EEZ resource consent application.
The NZAX-listed shares gained 3.5 percent to 30 cents, and have shed 6.5 percent this year.