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Press Release

Fieldfisher advises on more than US$1.1 billion-worth of mining and metals deals in 2019

13/01/2020
Persistent challenging conditions for the mining sector led to more creative deal-making and a greater focus on environmental and social governance over the course of the year. European law firm Fieldfisher advised clients on mining and metals deals worth in excess of US$1.1 billion in 2019, as investor restraint in the capital markets spawned an assortment of innovative transactions designed to keep projects moving.
 
The firm's flagship mining team, led by Head of Mining and Metals Jonathan Brooks, assisted mining companies, traders, investors and their advisers on a series of high-value pre-payment and royalty deals, high stakes disputes and various smaller financings for exploration projects in the last 12 months.
 
Highlights included an £11.5 million fundraising for Bluejay Mining plc for the Dundas Ilmenite project in Greenland; a US$250 million funding package for Mantos Copper's Mantos Blancos mine in Chile; a US$76 million dispute on behalf of Atalaya Mining plc concerning the Rio Tinto copper mine in Spain; and a £1.1 million investment agreement for Kalahari Metals Limited with Metal Tiger plc relating to copper operations in Botswana.
 
In addition to its well-established presence in Europe, Africa and the CIS region, Fieldfisher's mining team has been engaged on an increasing number of projects in South America in the past year, as small-to-mid-cap international mining companies turn their attention to a region previously dominated by the mining majors.
 
In the UK, the firm continues to act for the developers of two of the three largest active mining projects, namely Dalradian Resources and Strongbow Exploration.
 
Dalradian is developing the Curraghinalt gold project in County Tyrone in Northern Ireland, which the company believes to contain the seventh richest undeveloped gold seam in the world. Strongbow is looking to reopen the historic South Crofty tin mine in Cornwall. 
 
Clients also sought formal legal advice on environmental and social governance (ESG) issues, as a consequence of new laws and significant ESG-related litigation in some jurisdictions – a trend which is expected to gather pace in 2020 and beyond.
 
Commenting on the team's success over the past year, Jonathan Brooks, Head of Mining and Metals, said:
 
"Despite continued wariness of mining equities on the capital markets, we were able to keep the wheels of many projects turning by assisting clients with alternative funding arrangements.
 
"While price volatility continues to be an issue for many mining companies seeking finance, demand for key commodities, especially those used in energy transition technologies, remains strong – something that is recognised by specialists in the sector who are working with us to come up with imaginative financing solutions.
 
"We have also seen a notable rise in interest in ESG in the past year, as countries move to legislate for long-term climate obligations and take a firmer line on ethical transgressions, creating a need for advice on how to comply with legally-binding sustainability criteria.
 
"We look forward to deepening our involvement in these and other significant mining and metals-related trends as they unfold."
 
For further details of Fieldfisher's Mining and Metals team's 2019 highlights, please click here.
 
About Fieldfisher
 
Fieldfisher is a European law firm with market leading practices in many of the world's most dynamic sectors. We are an exciting, forward-thinking organisation with a particular focus on energy & natural resources, technology, finance & financial services, life sciences and media.

Fieldfisher's dedicated mining team advises companies, commodity trading houses, banks and investment funds on a wide range of matters. We have been active in the energy and natural resources sector for over 50 years and have a team more than 100 lawyers internationally.

The firm is also one of the leading legal advisers to companies listed on London's AIM market, many of which are in the natural resources sector.

Our network has more than 1,550 people working across 25 offices providing highly commercial advice based on an in-depth understanding of our clients' needs.

We operate across our offices in Amsterdam, Barcelona, Beijing, Belfast, Birmingham, Bologna, Brussels, Dublin, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Guangzhou, Hamburg, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, Manchester, Milan, Munich, Paris, Rome, Shanghai, Turin, Venice and Silicon Valley.
 

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