BEIJING, Jun 30, 2010 (Dow Jones Commodities News via Comtex) -- China National Gold Group Corp. said Tuesday it signed a strategic cooperation agreement with the East China Mineral Exploration and Development Bureau, or ECE, a mining agency owned by Jiangsu province, in a bid to secure more mineral resources through ECE's plentiful exploration and mining rights.
Sun Zhaoxue, president of China's largest and only state-owned gold miner, said in a statement on the company's website that China National Gold's advantage and experience lie in the capital market, which could help ECE increase investment in exploration.
The agreement marks the beginning of the two parties' substantial cooperation, the head of ECE was cited as saying in the statement, without providing details.
The move comes after the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission, which oversees China's 125 largest central government-owned enterprises, said in 2008 it would reduce their number to at most 100 by the end of this year, which could prompt more acquisitions and mergers among these companies or prompt companies that want to avoid being acquired to expand in size.
Sun Zhaoxue, president of China National Gold, said early this year that the company plans to increase its gold reserves by 100 tons in 2010, local media reported.
ECE's exploration and mining rights cover copper, gold, zinc, lead and iron ore in China, Australia, Africa and Canada. It agreed to acquire Brazilian iron-ore miner Itaminas Comercio de Minerios SA in a transaction valued at $1.22 billion in March this year.