You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

No buyer found for Spring Creek Mine

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 2/02/2017

Distressed state-owned mining company Solid Energy will close its Spring Creek Mine after it was unable to find a buyer.

The mine, near Greymouth, will now be sealed after being placed into care and maintenance in 2012 when it was deemed financially unviable and production stopped.

Solid Energy has been looking to sell is assets since entering voluntary administration in 2015, owing 1500 creditors $320 million.

Spring Creek is the only mine in its asset sales portfolio that subsequently failed to attract a buyer.

Solid Energy chief executive Tony King said sharp falls in coal prices and the large investment needed to get the mine running again had made its failure to sell inevitable.

"We had maintained a level of optimism through the sales process that a buyer would recognise the potential for economic redevelopment of Spring Creek Mine, however that simply hasn't happened," he said.

"Closure is now the only remaining option."

The closure comes after Solid Energy last October announced it had sold a number of its other assets.

These included the Stockton export coal operation, the Rotowaro and Maramarua mines in Waikato, New Vale and Ohai coal mines in Southland, and Strongman, Liverpool and the Reefton mines on the West Coast.

Former Prime Minister John Key said at the time the sales were good news for creditors, while Labour saw the sale as "a sad indictment of government incompetence".

Solid Energy will now offer the Rocky Creek coal washery, located close to Spring Creek, for sale on a stand-alone basis.

The company said the closure of Spring Creek is expected to be completed in three to four months and the nine staff, who had been maintaining the mine, had been told on Friday of its closure..

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon