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Joe Hockey approves 100% ownership for Chinese miner

A Chinese company has been given the OK by Federal Treasurer, Joe Hockey, to take over 100% ownership of Yancoal Australia, owner and operator of mines in Queensland, New South Wales and Western Australia.

Yanzhou Coal currently owns 70% of Yancoal, but under the new deal, the Chinese company will be able to increase that to 100%.

The company owns the Moolarben, Ashton, Stratford, Austar, Donaldson and Duralie  mines in New South Wales and operates the Yarrabee,  Middlemount and Cameby Downs mines in Queensland.

Western Australia’s Premier mine is also managed by Yancoal of behalf of Yanzhou.

Hockey’s decision comes after he rejected a foreign takeover bid for GrainCorp late last month, with some analysts suggesting this is the Treasurer’s way of ‘making up’.

“In commitments provided to me, Yanzhou has undertaken to continue to support Yancoal’s ongoing operations in Australia, thereby maintaining its position as a major regional employer,” Mr Hockey said in statement.

“So long as Yanzhou continues to own at least 51 per cent of the shares of Yancoal, Yanzhou will ensure Yancoal continues to operate so that it remains solvent.

“In addition, Yanzhou will extend its existing loans to Yancoal if required, and will support Yancoal’s plans to expand the Moolarben open cut mine.”

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