MINING group ENRC has tightened its control over copper operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo with a $550m (£343m) cash deal that ends its links to controversial Israeli businessman Dan Gertler.
ENRC – one of several foreign-owned, London-listed miners to come under fire over governance and transparency – has been pushing to streamline its structure, clean up its reputation and improve a share price that has underperformed rivals by almost 60 per cent over the past two years.
Transparency campaigners have criticised ENRC for using partners in Congo, working through offshore companies, which they say could shelter corrupt local politicians.
Gertler, an influential figure in Congo’s mining sector, denies the accusations.
ENRC said in a statement over the weekend that it had agreed to buy the 49.5 per cent it does not already own of holding company Camrose Resources, which controls assets including the coveted Kolwezi project and a string of exploration licences.
It will also buy out outstanding minorities in Camrose subsidiaries. ENRC chairman Mehmet Dalman, who took the top job in February, said the deal was part of a strategy of consolidating copper and cobalt assets in Africa.
City A.M. Reporter