Botswana coal miner Minergy plans UK listing for 2018

LONDON, Nov 10 (Reuters) - Botswana coal producer Minergy plans to list in London next year to give it access to a pool of capital that it could tap at a later date to fund its expansion, it said on Friday.

CEO Andre Boje told Reuters the company, which is already listed in Botswana, could look to raise around 700,000 pounds ($925,000) mainly to cover the cost of the listing.

Minergy owns the Masama Coal Project, which is projected to produce 2.4 million tonnes of thermal coal for export to South Africa and mainly Asian markets.

Boje said the first phase of development was fully funded, but the company could come to the market for its expansion.

The listing is planned for the third quarter of 2018, after Minergy gets its mining licence from the Botswana government.

In an interview, Boje said London investors seemed upbeat about prospects for coal, despite a global move away from using fossil fuels for energy in favour of cleaner sources.

After slumping in 2015-16, coal prices have recovered and analysts say it will still have a major role in energy production for years to come.

Coal is still the world’s second most used fuel after oil, according to the International Energy Agency, with many developing countries locked into its use until the cost of renewable and storage technology comes down.

“We were very surprised at how positive the vibe we got out of the United Kingdom as to investment in Africa and coal,” Boje said.

“The UK investors are underweight in coal and they will admit it.”

Minergy earlier this year scrapped a plan to list in South Africa, mainly due to an uncertain regulatory environment, while investors in Australia were not interested due to many past deals gone bad.

$1 = 0.7634 pounds Reporting by Zandi Shabalala; Editing by Mark Potter