Blackstone Minerals details strong investor interest in Vietnam nickel project

ASX-listed Blackstone Minerals has completed a lender engagement programme for its flagship Ta Khoa Project in Northern Vietnam, which has garnered positive interest from investors, according to the firm.

Lender engagement was undertaken with select globally recognised commercial banks, export credit agencies (ECAs) and multilateral agencies, supported by Korea Development Bank (KDB) and BurnVoir Corporate Finance.

“The feedback generated via our targeted lender engagement strategy has provided valuable intelligence to guide our development of the Ta Khoa Project,” said Blackstone managing director Scott Williamson.

“Valuable insights received through this process have already resulted in positive actions that Blackstone has implemented to further de-risk technical, commercial and funding elements of the project.

“We look forward to advancing our lender engagement through their due diligence and credit approval processes as we move closer to a final investment decision on Ta Khoa in 2023.”

The nickel deposit at Ta Khoa resembles one of two major cogs in the company’s vertically integrated development strategy, with a refinery forming the other half of the Ta Khoa Project.

Ta Khoa is emerging as a nickel sulphide district of enviable scale with several exploration targets yet to be tested. Blackstone’s project will have annual refining capacity of 400,000 tonnes, with feedstock provided from a combination of concentrate from the project and third-party feed sources.

Pilot plant testing and definitive feasibility studies are underway and will continue to technically de-risk the Ta Khoa Project.