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Sirius Not Planning to Quit Stock Market

Sirius Not Planning to Quit Stock Market

Published by Matthew Pells at 12:03pm 19th October 2019. (Updated at 12:04pm 19th October 2019)

Sirius Minerals, owner of the Whitby Potash Mine, says it is not planning to quit the stock market and that comments from it's Chief Executive have been taken out of context.

In an article in a national newspaper, Chris Fraser appeared to suggest that given current market conditions the mining firm might be better off as a private company, but in a statement to Yorkshire Coast Radio Sirius say....

“There is no intention to take Sirius Minerals private. Our focus is on completing our strategic review and unlocking the value of our project for our shareholders, our community, and the UK as a whole.”

In September the firm failed to secure £400m of funding it needed and scaled back the pace of it's building programme, leading to some some construction workers being laid off.

Speaking to Yorkshire Coast Radio in September Gareth Edmunds, External Affairs Director at Sirius Minerals, said:

"We're trying to minimise any impact on our staff; and our focus in making this decision is to buy ourselves an additional six months to find an additional funding solution.

That will be part of the strategic review and that will come up with options that will hopefully see us back into full speed ahead, and delivering the project which is our main focus."

Earlier this month political leaders and businesses from North Yorkshire, Tees Valley and the wider region joined forces to urge the Government to give its full support to the Sirius Minerals project.

In a joint letter to the Prime Minister, signed by Scarborough Borough Council Leader Steve Siddons,  they outlined the importance of the project to the local economy, stating:

"Sirius has already invested over £1 billion in the project and has become a crucial and very visible part of the northern economy.

Once operational the project will support over 1,000 good quality, well-paid direct jobs, with more in the supply chain. We also welcome the positive contribution that Sirius has made to the community through our boroughs, which we have seen first-hand

The problems facing coastal communities are well documented; they are far away from large industrial centres, often have poor communication links and suffer from low-wage, seasonal and part-time opportunities, The Sirius Minerals project gives these communities – and particularly their young people – real opportunities they would otherwise have to leave the area to secure.

Up until last week there were 1,200 people working on the project across its sites in North Yorkshire and Teesside. With last week’s announcement that Sirius was unable to deliver its stage 2 financing plan, we are obviously concerned that the delivery of this important and transformational project will be delayed, and the impact such a delay would have on the regional and UK economy. "

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