China firm to acquire major African iron ore mine

BEIJING (AP) — Chinese state media say a Chinese company is finalizing the acquisition of an Australian mining firm that controls a major iron ore mine in west Africa, a move that would give China a stronger role in setting global iron ore prices.

The official Xinhua News Agency, citing officials from Hanlong Group, says Hanlong will complete the acquisition of Sundance Resources Ltd. for 45 Australian cents (50 cents) per share by March 1.

Sundance controls the Mbalam iron ore mine, which straddles Cameroon and the Republic of Congo.

Xinhua said Saturday that Hanlong is investing $5 billion to develop the Mbalam project — most likely in partnership with Chinese state-owned companies — and build a 550-kilometer (340-mile) railway and a shipping port.

China is eager to acquire overseas resources to feed its growth.

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