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Coal mine goes bust weeks after roof collapses

Bounty Mining
Bounty Mining

An underground resources company is unable to repay its debts after structural problems that caused extensive delays at its coal mine and infrastructure in Central Queensland.

Bounty Mining has appointed KordaMentha partners Jarrod Villani and Robert Hutson as voluntary administrators as well as PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) partners Ben Campbell and Chris Hill as receivers and managers of the Cook Colliery, 195km west of Rockhampton.

Weak prices blamed

“Receivers and managers are now in control of the group’s assets, undertakings and operations, including responsibility for the day to day operations of the group’s business,” the proponent said in a statement to the stock market. “The appointment follows a period of depressed coking coal prices, production shortfalls in the wake of the previously announced roof falls, and the inability of the board to source the additional funds required to support the company in its transition to place change mining.”

In October a section of the roof caved in at the site, causing work to be interrupted for several weeks while the area was cleaned up and damage assessed. The proponent estimated in November the delay had caused a 23,000 tonnes run of mine (ROM) blow to production for the period, and an indirect 150,000 tonnes ROM loss for the 2020 financial year.

“There will be an adverse impact on the company’s financial position as a consequence,” Bounty said at the time.

QMEB can reveal the colliery could be sold or restructured.

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‘Urgent assessment’

“We intend to transition the Cook Colliery’s operations into care and maintenance whilst we undertake an urgent assessment of the business and explore all options to sell and/or restructure the business for the future,” Bounty said.

Affected employees are being asked to contact PwC consultant Marcus Bertram by phoning 07 3257 6063 or emailing marcus.bertram@pwc.com

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