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The South African mining business LontohCoal is planning to open an office in Hong Kong as it looks to expand its presence in China.
Keen to take advantage of opportunities for growth in various Asian economies, LontohCoal plans to open its first Hong Kong office in early February 2012 and to list on the city’s stock exchange within a few months of doing so, Mining Weekly reports.
A series of meetings have been held between the company’s bosses and leaders of a Hong Kong business delegation for South Africa, with all parties convinced that establishing offices in the city represents an important positive step for LontohCoal in Asia.
The company’s vice president Renita Moonsamy is to be handed the task of leading development at its Hong Kong offices.
For Lontoh, the move represents a key step in a plan that involves floating on the Hong Kong stock exchange, raising large-scale investment and building an enormous coking and thermal coal mine in Zimbabwe.
Plans are also in place to see the company dramatically increase the scale of coal production in its native South Africa, with capital raised in Hong Kong expected to make this possible.
“This requires a deep equity capital pool and the Hong Kong Stock Exchange provides the company with the opportunity of being able to raise large-scale capital to fast-track these developments,” Lontoh’s chief executive Tshepo Kgadima is quoted as saying.
The expansive development plans outlined by the mining group’s bosses recently are based in large part on the likelihood that demand for energy and coal in particular will continue to rise sharply across Asia in coming years.
Offices in Hong Kong are the world’s most expensive to rent in terms of price per square foot, according to a report on the subject from Cushman & Wakefield from earlier this year. London’s West End and the City also made the property adviser’s top five list of most costly places to rent offices.