Mongolian metallurgical coal explorer and infrastructure company, Aspire Mining has, through its rail subsidiary Northern Railways LLC, received confirmation from Mongolia’s National Development Agency that it has approved an 18 month extension to the time required to complete the conditions precedent for the Erdenet to Ovoot Rail Concession Agreement.
These activities include completion of feasibility studies, environmental studies and permits, land use agreements, commercial agreements including the EPC Contract and its funding.
Northern Railways now has until August 2018 to complete all the conditions precedent for the Erdenet to Ovoot railway.
The Mongolian Cabinet also approved a submission from Northern Railways to alter the alignment as it approached Erdenet to avoid a potential overlap with other infrastructure. This opened the way for approval for the extension in accordance with the Rail Concession Agreement. Engineering work performed as part of the submission shows that the alternative alignment does not add to the capital or operating costs of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway.
On 9 January 2017, the company announced that Northern Railways had received the first stage of the feasibility study from China Railway First Survey and Design Institute Group Co Ltd (a subsidiary of China Rail Construction Corporation) that confirmed that the Erdenet to Ovoot railway is financially feasible and recommended construction to commence as soon as possible.