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Timab Magnesium becomes sole owner of Spain’s Magnesitas Navarras

April 23,2018      views

Editor: Adam Zhang

The subsidiary of France-based Roullier takes full ownership of the Spanish magnesia producer after 18 years of joint ownership with Grecian Magnesite, at a time of tightness in the global magnesia markets.

Magnesia supplier Timab Magnesium has become the sole owner of Magnesitas Navarras (Magna) after completing the acquisition of the remaining stake in its parent company from previous joint owner Grecian Magnesite.

Timab, a subsidiary of France-based Groupe Rouiller, and Grecian Magnesite acquired Magna as a joint venture in 2000. Timab now has full ownership of Magna Inversiones, which controls Spain-based Magna.

Magna operates two mines in Spain, in Azcarate and Borobia, and supplies refractory masses for electric-arc furnaces for steelmaking.

"Proceeds from the sale will release capital and other resources that we can deploy to grow and expand our core mining and processing operations in Greece and Turkey," Dimitris Portolos, the chief executive officer of Grecian Magnesite, said.

Groupe Rouiller’s roster of companies includes magnesia miners and suppliers Timab, Magna, Magnesium do Brasil and Van Mannekus, a supplier of magnesium hydroxide. The group serves all major consuming markets for magnesia products including refractories, industry, agriculture and animal feed.

The acquisition comes at a time of tightness in global magnesia markets, after the huge decline in output from China, the single largest supplier of the material, during 2017.

Availability was severely constrained in the refractories industry, which is one of the main end-markets for magnesia, taking prices to record highs.

The price of Chinese dead burned magnesia, 97.5%, has risen by almost 300% to $1,100-1,400 per tonne fob China on Wednesday April 18 from $305-335 per tonne in June last year.

In Europe, the price of European high-grade fused magnesia more than doubled to $1,500-1,700 per tonne fob Europe on April 18 from $640-750 per tonne in August 2017.

The tightness is expected to continue in the short term following the stoppage of all magnesite mining operations in Liaoning, China, late last week.

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