QUEBEC - A Canadian-led consortium of international investors has made a successful offer to buy 100% of Quebec's privately held Mine Jeffrey Inc. All shareholders, including the workers' co-operative, have approved the offer. The parties hope to close the transaction by the end of the year and to resume work on the underground mining project.
The consortium, which includes investors from India, will finance the completion of an underground mine project initiated several years ago. This will enable the company to produce approximately 225,000 tonnes of chrysotile fibre annually, while certifying safe and responsible practices from cradle to grave.
This investment will secure 500 jobs in Quebec for the next 25 years, in a region that is currently economically depressed; it will also maintain Canadian control over an important commodity.
According to Bernard Coulombe, president and principal shareholder of Mine Jeffrey, "The new investors will not be involved in the day-to-day running of the company, which will be entrusted to the existing management and workers."
Earlier this year the Quebec government offered to guarantee a $58-million loan for the project.