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Sibanye-Stillwater has acquired ownership of New Century’s Queensland zinc mine, ending a months-long acquisition process.

The South African miner made an off-market takeover bid for New Century in February 2023, citing changes in strategic direction and a decline in shareholder value as the reason for its takeover bid.

The offer was to acquire up to 100 per cent of the fully paid ordinary shares at a price of $1.10 cash per share.

After unprecedented rainfall hit Queensland in March 2023, Sibanye provided $30 million in relief to New Century after its Century mine was forced to suspend operations due to high rainfall.

Now, Sibanye has completed its acquisition of the zinc mine tailings project.

“Australia provides a stable, robust and high-quality mining industry for us to expand our focus on metals that are crucial to renewable energy solutions,” Sibanye executive vice president of investor relations and corporate affairs James Wellsted told the ABC.

“We think that (tailings reprocessing) is going to become an increasingly important part of global metal supply because finding new deposits and permitting new mines is becoming increasingly difficult.

“So the circular economy, reprocessing, and recycling is becoming of more and more value.”

The New Century board has recommended its shareholders accept the offer since the beginning of the saga, citing material uncertainty that may cast significant doubt on New Century’s ability to continue to operate.

“Prices over the past two years have been relatively high but we have seen a pullback in most commodity prices over 2022 and going into 2023, mainly linked to global uncertainty,” Wellsted told the ABC.

“But I think we are starting to see some green shoots now and the outlook is more positive moving forward.

“We’re quite excited about our investment in Australia; it is a new region for us.

“We know the Australian mining industry is home to very robust, high-quality operations and companies, and a lot of opportunities.”