Minera Esperanza, controlled by Chilean miner Antofagasta Minerals (ANTO.L: Quote), said on Friday it has obtained a $1.05 billion loan from a consortium of banks and lenders to help finance its Esperanza mine.
The company did not divulge the conditions of the 12-year loan, which is backed by various government institutions as well as private banks.
The state-run Japan Bank for International Cooperation contributed $400 million in credit, while Export Development Canada put up $200 million and Germany's KfW IPEX-Bank GmbH contributed another $50 million.
The remaining $400 million in credit was granted by Japanese banks Mizuho Financial Group (8411.T: Quote), Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ (8306.T: Quote), and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation (8316.T: Quote), along with European banks Calyon, ING Capital (ING.AS: Quote), Santander (SAN.MC: Quote) and Natixis (CNAT.PA: Quote).
The Esperanza copper-gold mine is slated to start producing by the end of 2010, and should produce approximately 700,000 tonnes of concentrate a year in its first 10 years of operation.
Antofagasta's Chief Executive Marcelo Awad said last month that total capital expenditure on the project, including financing costs, would be around $2.3 billion.
Last year, Antofagasta sold a 30 percent stake in the Esperanza project to Japanese trading firm Marubeni Corp (8002.T: Quote) for $1.3 billion to help finance the mine's construction. (
Reporting by Antonio de la Jara; Writing by Hilary Burke; Editing by Gary Hill)
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