Bougainville Copper Ltd. http://bcl.nlawebdesigns.com/ http://investing.businessweek.com/research/stocks/snapshot/snapshot.asp?ticker=BOC:AU
Bougainville Copper Limited (BCL) has produced copper concentrate containing gold and silver from a mine at Panguna, Bougainville , Papua New Guinea , from 1972 until operations were suspended due to militant activity in May 1989. The Company now derives investment income. The company has no subsidiaries.
Mine production was suspended on 15 May1989 because of attacks on employees. Following repeated instances of damage to mine facilities and the power line and further attacks on employees, it became necessary to evacuate all remaining company personnel from Bougainville early in 1990. There is now considerable confidence that the mine has a productive future.
Since the withdrawal of company personnel from Bougainville was completed on 24 March, 1990, there has been no care and maintenance of the company's assets. Considerable deterioration of the assets has occurred in the intervening period, because of this lack of care and maintenance, their exposure to the elements, vandalism, pilferage and militant action. However, as access to the mine site has not been possible, the extent of the necessary write-downs is not capable of reliable measurement or estimation. At the same time, because the assets are not in use, normal depreciation charges, to reflect wear and tear from their utilisation in production, are not technically appropriate. Nevertheless, with the passage of time, it is clear that a major write-down of assets from their pre-closure levels will be required. To allow for this future write-down, the directors made a general provision in 1991 for deterioration, damage and pilferage of K350 million, with this sum being classified as an extraordinary item.
The exact quantum of this provision should not be viewed as a precise calculation reflecting an accurate estimate of the present value of losses or likely costs of repair. Rather, the reduction in carrying value should be seen as a broad estimate of the total service potential likely to have been lost to the operation in respect of the whole inventory of assets carried in the books.
While Directors have made this provision in good faith based on the limited information available to them, it must be recognised that the actual extent of the necessary write-downs can only be established when access to the mine site by appropriate company representatives is again possible. Accordingly, the 1991 provision may eventually prove to be above or below the sum, which is necessary to reflect these losses. The directors believe that in the absence of reliable information and the lack of a more suitable alternative, this is the only appropriate basis to use, despite the current cessation of operations.
In 1999 BCL announced a change in strategic direction. As well as maintaining readiness to redevelop the mine, the company has developed a portfolio of cash and equities. The company has no substantial debt.
Bougainville Copper Limited (BCL) is owned 53.58% by Rio Tinto Limited. The Papua New Guinea Government owns 19.06% while public shareholders hold the remaining 27.36% of the share capital. Since the previous withdrawal of employees from the island, a small management team has operated in Port Moresby . This team is incorporated into Rio Tinto Minerals (PNG) Limited (RTM), a wholly owned subsidiary of Rio Tinto Limited. BCL has a management service agreement with Rio Tinto. RTM performs this agreement on behalf of Rio Tinto.