MPX Port

From Global Energy Monitor

MPX Port, also known as Puerto MPX or Puerto CCX, was a proposed coal export terminal in La Guajira Department, Colombia. It was originally promoted by MPX Colombia, a subsidiary of MPX Energia SA and part of the diversified, Brazilian-based EBX Group. Economic difficulties at MPX led to the 2014 sale of all of MPX's Colombian assets to the Turkish conglomerate Yildirim Holding A.S., but Yildirim subsequently announced that it was backing out of the sales agreement, leaving future plans for the terminal uncertain.

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Background

In 2011 MPX Colombia stated that its proposed coal export port would be located within a 521 hectare concession on the Colombian Atlantic coast "about 150 km from its [coal] concessions in La Guajira." The company stated that the port would have capacity of "up to 20 million tons/year and a depth of 20 meters, thus being able to handle capesize vessels."[1] The project was intended to facilitate the export of coal from MPX's proposed Canaverales mine and Papayal mine for use in coal fired power stations owned and operated by MPX in Chile and Brazil.

In early 2012, MPX spun off its Colombian coal assets to create a new subsidiary called CCX.[2]

According to a November 2013 article in Coal Age magazine, the MPX port (described in the article as Puerto MPX or Puerto CCX) "was one of the pet projects of Brazilian billionaire Eike Batista. It was intended to have a throughput capacity of 30 million tons. The final harbor depth of 69 ft would accommodate vessels of up to 180,000 DWT. The port (Puerto MPX) would be located a few miles east of Santa Marta on the Caribbean Sea at Dibulla. It was intended to serve three CCX mines (Cañaverales, Papayal and San Juan) near the towns of San Juan de Cesar, Fonseca and Barrancas. During Phase I (first two years), coal would be hauled by 35- to 50-ton trucks (tractomulas) on Highway 88 to Cuestecita, then straight west through La Florida to Puerto MPX at Dibulla. In Phase II, a new CCX railroad would begin hauling the coal produced in the new longwall mine, San Juan."[3]

In 2012, after suffering catastrophic losses in failed energy investments elsewhere, MPX/CCX owner Batista "had to sell off many of his assets and companies, including his two Colombian surface mining reserves, Cañaverales and Papayal. This left CCX with only one mineable reserve, an underground property known as San Juan slated for longwall operation.... Total asset value of CCX CARVAO on August 30 was $429.2 million, far short of the $5.5 billion required to develop the remaining coal reserve, San Juan underground. At that same time, Natalia Gutierrez, energy and mining vice minister, said the project is now “on standby.""[3]

In 2013, Batista announced his intention to sell CCX for approximately $450 million to the Turkish conglomerate Yildirim Holding AS.[4] By the time the sale was concluded in early 2014, the selling price had dropped to $125 million.[5] CCX listed the assets sold to Yildirim as follows: the "flagship San Juan underground mine, including 671.8 million tonnes of reserves as well as railway and port infrastructure, the Canaverales and Papayal open-pit mines, which hold 27.3 million and 15.6 million tonnes of coal, respectively." Shortly after the sale, Yildirim Holding announced its intention to move forward aggressively with plans to export coal from the newly acquired Colombian mines to its coal-fired power plants in Turkey, with all sea cargo arrangements to be handled by Yildirim. [6]

In October 2015, less than a month after CCX announced that key elements of the sale had been approved by relevant Colombian government agencies[7], Yildirim announced its intention to back out of the agreement, citing CCX's non-compliance with original conditions of the sale.[8] Given the lack of subsequent press coverage and the collapse of CCX owner Eike Batista's business empire, it appears that the project has been abandoned.


Project Details

  • Sponsor: Yildirim Holding AS
  • Location: La Guajira Department, Colombia
  • Proposed Coal Capacity (Million tonnes per annum): 30
  • Status: Shelved
  • Projected In Service:
  • Type: Exports (Turkey)
  • Source of Coal: La Guajira, Colombia
  • Cost:
  • Financing:

Articles and resources

References

  1. MPX "MPX Portfolio", MPX website, accessed February 2011.
  2. "MPX to spin off coal assets, create CCX", BN Americas, January 12, 2012.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Colombian Coal Prepares for Canal Expansion", Coal Age, November 22, 2013.
  4. "Batista to Sell Colombia Coal Mines to Yildirim for $450 Million", Bloomberg, October 29, 2013.
  5. "Brazil's Eike Batista Slashes Price on Colombian Mining Projects", Wall Street Journal, February 3, 2014.
  6. "Yildirim all set to splash out $500m on bulkers", Trade Winds, March 7, 2014.
  7. "CCX Carvao da Colombia : Disclosure Update Regarding the Transaction With Yildirim", 4-Traders, September 28, 2015
  8. "Turcos reversan compra de CCX", El Pilón, October 13, 2015.

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