Rocklands copper miner goes into liquidation
Meanwhile, retail shareholders are planning a class action over the collapse of the Rocklands copper mine operator.
Shareholder representative Stuart McCullagh said he had been disappointed by Australian Securities and Investments Commission’s failure to act on a long chain of complaints about the company’s directors and the way the Rocklands operation was run.
He is hoping the move to liquidation will see a fresh wave of investigations into the company.
The shift into liquidation also means CuDeco’s Rocklands mine workers should now be able to make claims under the Federal Government’s Fair Entitlements Guarantee.
But local Federal MP Bob Katter said he was aware of former employees who would be owed unpaid wages well in excess of the 13 weeks cap which that safety net scheme provides.
He is also concerned about the many local businesses who have taken ‘a terrible hit’ in unpaid bills after supplying goods and services to the mine.
Operations at CuDeco’s Rocklands copper mine at Cloncurry have been suspended since August 31, 2018.
Lenders China Tonghai International Financial Limited (CTIFL) appointed receivers in July last year following a strategic review of funding and restructuring options. The company entered into voluntary administration a week later.
The administrators for the company, Jeremy Nipps and Matthew Joiner from Cor Cordis, now have been appointed as liquidators.
A meeting of creditors on April 7 had passed a resolution to accept a Deed of Company Arrangement (DOCA) proposal from a lender which would have seen former employees and small creditors (with claims less than $50,000) receive 64c and 24c in the dollar respectively.
It also included plans to merge CuDeco as a new entity with active copper miner Mt Cuthbert Resources.
However, employees did not pass the resolution agreeing to adjust the statutory priorities for payment of their entitlements pursuant to the proposed deed terms.
Cor Cordis says the DOCA was not able to be executed by the April 30 cut off date and no application proceeded in court to adjust statutory priorities.
This triggered a mechanism where the company was deemed to have passed a special resolution under the relevant Act that it be wound up voluntarily.