VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - May 22, 2012) - PUGET VENTURES INC. ("Puget") (TSX VENTURE:PVS) (the "Company"), further to its earlier announcement that the Company has entered into a strategic partnership with Beijing AXHA Investment Co. ("Anhua"), Puget is pleased to announce that it has accepted the recommendation of Anhua to sign an MOU with China Aluminium International Engineering Corporation Limited ("CHALIECO") as EPC contractor to develop the Karakul Cobalt Project ("Karakul") in Altai, Russia upon completion of the Company's previously-announced acquisition of Pafra Enterprises Company Limited ("Pafra"). CHALIECO is a subsidiary of China Aluminum Corporation (CHINALCO).
The potential engagement of CHALIECO results from the previously-announced MOU between the Company and Anhua. Pursuant to that MOU, Anhua was entitled to select an EPC contractor for the Karakul project agreeable to the Company, and will arrange the financing for the engagement of such EPC contractor, subject to the Company issuing common share purchase warrants to Anhua, and providing security with respect to such financing in the form of a pledge of the mining rights underlying the Karakul project or the shares of the Russian entity holding such rights. The formal terms of such arrangement will be finalized in a definitive agreement between the parties. Anhua has nominated CHALIECO, a premier Chinese contractor, who has been selected to render technical and construction services for the development of the Karakul project. The partnership between Anhua and the Company remains subject to numerous conditions, including but not limited to the parties entering into aforementioned definitive agreement, and the Company's completion of its acquisition of Pafra.
The Karakul project is beneficially owned by Pafra. As previously announced, the Company is proceeding with its acquisition of all of the issued and outstanding securities of Pafra, which is subject to numerous conditions. There is no guarantee or assurance that the Company will complete such acquisition.
On completion of the Pafra acquisition, Puget Ventures and CHALIECO will work towards the development of the Karakul Cobalt Project in accordance to a preliminary plan of action, which will include, amongst other items, a scoping level technical proposal and analysis and, given favourable findings, a bankable feasibility study. Subject to positive bankable feasibility study and project finance through Anhua, CHALIECO will proceed in role as EPC contractor for the project construction and commissioning.
CHALIECO, a wholly owned subsidiary of CHINALCO, will provide services for Karakul Project, covering project feasibility study, technical consultation, engineering, equipment and material procurement, project construction, general project contracting, project management service and technical service.
CHALIECO has strong technical expertise in the non-ferrous metal area and also has the Changsha Non-Ferrous Metallurgy Design and Research Institute Company Limited, a design institute that is specialized in cobalt mining and processing. CHALIECO has EPC experience in China, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, India, among other countries.
CHALIECO has a history of more than 50 years, and currently over 14,000 employees.
"Puget is pleased to partner with a first-class international engineering corporation as progressive as CHALIECO on the Karakul Project," said Erin Chutter, President and CEO of Puget Ventures. "We are also delighted with CITIC Anhua in its ability to mobilize a senior contractor with exceptional expertise. This emphasizes the Company's determination to partner with experienced industry groups and establish itself as a leader in the cobalt space."
About Puget Ventures Inc. / Global Cobalt Corporation
Upon completion of the Pafra Acquisition, Puget Ventures Inc. will be renamed Global Cobalt Corporation, and will be a Canada-based strategic metals company focused on the development of a new mining region in the Republic of Altai. As first mover into this new jurisdiction, Global Cobalt is positioning itself as a pioneer in an untapped region as the first and only foreign-invested publicly traded mining company to advance mineral projects in Altai. Global Cobalt will leverage the world-class Karakul Project and intends to explore other economically feasible projects held under right-of-first-refusal while aggressively expanding and exploring existing properties to supply the growing demand for cobalt and other strategic metals.
Cautionary Statement on Forward-Looking Information: Certain information contained in this news release, including any information relating to Puget or Global Cobalt's future financial or operating performance may be deemed "forward-looking". All statements in this news release, other than statements of historical fact, that address events or developments that Puget expects to occur, are "forward-looking statements". Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts and are generally, but not always, identified by the words "expects", "does not expect", "plans", "anticipates", "does not anticipate", "believes", "intends", "estimates", "projects", "potential", "scheduled", "forecast", "budget" and similar expressions, or that events or conditions "will", "would", "may", "could", "should" or "might" occur. All such forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and estimates of management as of the date such statements are made and are subject to important risk factors and uncertainties, many of which are beyond Puget's ability to control or predict. Forward-looking statements are necessarily based on estimates and assumptions that are inherently subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results, level of activity, performance or achievements to be materially different from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Key assumptions upon which Puget's forward-looking statements are based include the following: Puget's ability to complete the Pafra Acquisition; its ability to successfully integrate, explore, develop and operate the Karakul Property; that cobalt prices will not fall significantly; that Global Cobalt will be able to secure new financing to continue its operations on an as-needed basis; that there are no significant changes to applicable laws in the geographic areas in which Global Cobalt will operate; that Global Cobalt will obtain regulatory approvals in a timely manner; the absence of material adverse effects; Global Cobalt's ability to achieve its growth strategy; and that Global Cobalt's operating costs will not increase significantly. In addition, there are risks and hazards associated with the business of mineral exploration, development and mining, including environmental hazards, industrial accidents, and unusual or unexpected formations. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance, and actual results and future events could materially differ from those anticipated in such statements. All of the forward-looking statements contained in this news release are qualified by these cautionary statements. Puget expressly disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, events or otherwise, except in accordance with applicable securities laws.
Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.