- GCM Resources [LON:GCM] was the sector's biggest faller after press speculation in the Bangladesh media in relation to the Barapukuria coal mine in Bangladesh, a mine site which is unrelated to the company, and comments attributed to the Energy and Mineral Resources division of the government of Bangladesh.

The reports suggest that the Energy and Mineral Resources Division of the Government of Bangladesh has decided not to proceed with open pit mining at the Barapukuria coal mine site. One report also insinuates that the Government's decision also affects the Company's Phulbari Coal Project.

While GCM is in the process of verifying the accuracy of the media reports, the Company wishes to advise the following:

1) The press speculation is predominantly in relation to the Barapukuria coal mine, which is unrelated to the Company.

2) The Company, through its subsidiaries, has a legally enforceable contract with the Government of Bangladesh which gives it the right to explore, develop and mine in respect to the licence areas. GCM is awaiting Government approval of the Scheme of Development to proceed with mine development.

3) GCM has received no notification from the Government of any change to its contract.

The company estimates the Phulbari Coal Project will deliver over $2bn of inward investment into Bangladesh, supply high quality thermal coal to support up to 4,000MW to Bangladesh, while providing US$7bn of revenue to the government over the project's life. Within the north-west region of Bangladesh, development of the project is expected to create 17,000 jobs, develop new industries and increase agricultural production by facilitating year round irrigation, through water and electricity availability.

* * *

Tanzania-focused Kibo Mining [LON:KIBO] has signed a heads of agreement for the sale of its wholly-owned Sloane Developments with Opera Investment.

The HoA provides for the following to occur contemporaneously or immediately after the transaction:

- Subject to commercial, technical and legal due diligence, the consideration to acquire the Imweru and Lubando gold projects will be satisfied by the allotment and issue to Kibo on completion of the proposed transaction of 61,000,000 ordinary shares in the capital of Opera at 6 pence apiece

- As part of the proposed transaction, Opera and Kibo have agreed that there will be a fundraising by way of the issue of new ordinary shares in Opera at a price of 6p apiece. The proposed transaction will be subject to a minimum fundraising of £1,200,000 before expenses.

- Opera will delist from the Main Market of the London stock Exchange and the enlarged share capital of Opera following completion will contemporaneously seek admission to the AIM Market of the London Stock Exchange (AIM).

- Opera will be renamed Katoro Gold Mining plc and the board will initially comprise 3 directors nominated by Kibo and 2 directors nominated by Opera

Kibo said: "The transaction will no longer include the originally envisaged Imwelo project from LVG due to the fact that the latter was not able to meet some of the conditions precedent as called for under the agreement, by which Sloane Developments LTD was to acquire 100% of Tanzoz Minerals LTD.

"The gold projects for the new AIM listed company will now comprise, in addition to our flagship Imweru project, our Geita East projects (Lubando, Pamba & Busolwa projects). Geita East contains the Lubando project (located approximately 70 km east of Imweru) and has a NI 43-101 compliant Mineral Resource of 2,593,710 tonnes at 2 g/t, 0.5 g/t cut-off (168,300 oz. gold). Taken together Imweru and Lubando have a total mineral inventory in the region of 700,000 oz. gold at 1-2 g/t and what the Company believes is a significant resource."

Kibo Mining also said it has agreed to extend the deadline on which SEPCO III and Kibo had intended to reach agreement over the final amount still due for payment with regard to the Mbeya coal to power project development cost refund.

SEPCO III was given the opportunity to conduct an independent audit of the development costs incurred on the MCPP to date.

Kibo says despite a diligent effort, the time allowed for this work proved to be inadequate given that the costs in question cover a period spanning several financial years.

A new deadline was set for 14 October 2016, when Kibo and Tractebel Engineering will be meeting with SEPCO III in Qingdao, China, to assess and review SEPCO III's progress in preparing the EPC bid for the power component of the MCPP.

Kibo Mining chief executive Louis Coetzee said: "Kibo is very pleased with SEPCO III's performance to date under the revised agreement announced on 25 August 2016, with all work streams related to the preparation of the EPC-bid currently on schedule or slightly ahead of schedule.

"Both parties however underestimated the amount of work involved in conducting the independent audit referred to above. Kibo and SEPCO III subsequently agreed that a delay in finalising this particular element of the agreement was not going to affect either party's commitment and willingness to continue in parallel with the preparation and finalisation of the EPC-bid and it was therefore decided, by mutual agreement, to extend the date for final agreement on this matter."

* * *

Beowulf Mining [LON:BEM] has issued an update on the application process for Kallak North.

On the 21 September, the Company submitted a letter to the Mining Inspectorate of Sweden, revising its application boundary to encompass both the Concession Area, delineated by the Kallak North orebody, and the activities necessary to support a modern and sustainable mining operation.

The revised boundary takes into account the judgement made by the Supreme Administrative Court of Sweden in the Norra K�rr case, which stated that activities associated with a mining operation, but outside of the previously considered Concession Area, need to be studied as part of an application for an Exploitation Concession.

Beowulf says all the activities associated with a mine at Kallak, and their environmental effects, have been comprehensively studied as part of the Environmental Impact Assessment for the project.

The EIA has also been reviewed in full by the County Administrative Board, during the period from April 2013 to October 2014. In the letter, Beowulf reaffirmed the commitment it made back in November 2014, in response to the concerns raised by the CAB in October 2014 about a specific transport corridor under consideration, to eliminate the transport corridor that passes in a north/north-easterly direction through the Jelka-Rimak�bb� Natura 2000 area.

Chief executive Kurt Budge said: "We have been proactive in addressing what we believe are the matters raised by the Norra Kӓrr case, to facilitate the Mining Inspectorate's further review of the Company's application.

"We have always maintained that we have carried out all the necessary work to get an Exploitation Concession awarded. In 2015, and before the Norra Kӓrr judgement, this was validated by gaining the support of the CAB and the recommendation of the Mining Inspectorate.

"Before the Norra Kӓrr judgement, it was working practice in Sweden to limit decision criteria for an Exploitation Concession to the Concession Area, even though the EIA studied all the activities necessary to support a mining operation. Yet, you can't reap the economic benefits that a Concession Area can deliver, without having the required activities to support a mining operation.

"We have invested in Jokkmokk, we have established a business, created value and, most importantly, we have taken no shortcuts in the preparation of our application for an Exploitation Concession.

"I was in Lule� in early September and read in the newspaper of the loss of 40 jobs in Jokkmokk, being equivalent, in effect, to the loss of 7,000 jobs in Stockholm. Kallak has the potential to create 250 long term jobs, and we have a vision of Kallak as the catalyst for establishing a diverse, thriving and sustainable economy in Jokkmokk, long after mining has finished.

"Our approach throughout my time with the Company, has been to show our desire to become a local partner and, as we advance the project, deliver the responsible development of Kallak, sharing our plans and ideas with the community.

"Permitting delays have hindered our efforts, but we have demonstrated our firm commitment and begun to establish important relationships for the future.

"Now that we have made this submission, we will be asking for transparency on timeline and process to a decision being made, and will update shareholders in due course. I am optimistic that we remain on course for a positive decision."

* * *

Anglo American [LON:AAL] has appointed Stephen Pearce as finance director, following Rene Medori's decision to retire, as announced in April.

Pearce will join Anglo American and its group management committee on 30 January 2017, prior to joining the board as an executive director and taking over as finance director with effect from 24 April 2017, thereby enabling a smooth transition and the completion of the 2016 financial reporting process.

Pearce has been CFO of Fortescue Metals Group Ltd, the Australia-based and listed iron ore producer, since 2010, playing a major role in steering the company through a period of major investment and strong growth.

In more recent times, he has worked through the challenges of the sharp decrease in iron ore prices via rapid cost improvement and significant debt reduction.

Anglo American chief executive Mark Cutifani said: "We are very pleased that Stephen Pearce will be joining Anglo American as Finance Director. Stephen brings proven financial and commercial experience gained across the extractive and related industries. His strong relationships with the debt and equity capital markets have proven immensely valuable in his role at Fortescue, as has his work across complex cost and other efficiency performance programmes.

"We look forward to welcoming him to Anglo American in January 2017. We are also very grateful to Ren� M�dori for his ongoing commitment to the asset divestment and restructuring processes that he will continue to lead until his retirement at the end of 2017."

* * *

Highland Gold Mining [LON:HGM] will release its interim results for the six months ending 30 June on 26 September.

* * *

Obtala Limited [LON:OBT] has, via subsidiary African Home Stores Ltd, finalised an agreement to dispose of its 72.69%-owned chain of Lifes' Comfort Solutions retail outlets in Lesotho for $100 cash.

The sale was to Rystabelz PTY Ltd. Completion was expected within 90 days, conditional upon all minority shareholders in LCS having had an opportunity to exercise their pre-emptive rights under the LCS articles of association or otherwise agreeing to the sale.

At 4:21pm:

[LON:AAL] Anglo American PLC share price was +29.1p at 949.6p

[LON:BEM] Beowulf Mining PLC share price was 0p at 4.25p

[LON:BKY] Berkeley Energia Ltd share price was 0p at 49p

[LON:CEY] Centamin PLC share price was -0.15p at 148.15p

[LON:CHL] Churchill Mining PLC share price was +1.5p at 27.75p

[LON:CZA] Coal of Africa Ltd share price was +0.2p at 3.12p

[LON:FDI] Firestone Diamonds PLC share price was +2.25p at 47.5p

[LON:FRES] Fresnillo PLC share price was -12.5p at 1789.5p

[LON:GCM] GCM Resources PLC share price was -4p at 11.75p

[LON:GEMD] Gem Diamonds Ltd share price was -0.5p at 121.5p

[LON:HGM] Highland Gold Mining Ltd share price was +5.5p at 136.75p

[LON:HOC] Hochschild Mining PLC share price was -4.9p at 286.1p

[LON:KIBO] Kibo Mining share price was -0.63p at 8.25p

[LON:KMR] Kenmare Resources PLC share price was -38.75p at 327.5p

[LON:VED] Vedanta Resources PLC share price was -0.5p at 554p

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