08/06/2004 - 22:00

Busy year for Hunt

08/06/2004 - 22:00

Bookmark

Save articles for future reference.

THE past 12 months has been a busy and interesting period for Hunt & Humphry partner Michael Hunt, who has been ranked by his peers as the top mining lawyer in Western Australia for the second year in a row.

Busy year for Hunt

THE past 12 months has been a busy and interesting period for Hunt & Humphry partner Michael Hunt, who has been ranked by his peers as the top mining lawyer in Western Australia for the second year in a row.

“I think the biggest change has been the gold price going up in the interim period,” Mr Hunt said. “That has made us all much busier.”

Other lawyers attracting support in the mining category included Blake Dawson Waldron’s Geoff Gishubl, Wright Legal’s Paul Wright and Blakiston & Crabb’s Rick Crabb.

Some of Mr Hunt’s highlights over the past year include work on Redback Mining’s change of domicile to Canada and the successful float of gold explorer A1 Minerals.

He has also helped a couple of local companies, Reliance Mining and Precious Metals Australia, in their negotiations with big corporates.

Mr Hunt was formerly chairman of Redback Mining, which is developing the Chirano gold project in Ghana in West Africa.

He said the Australian stock market has a degree of scepticism about African projects and the company concluded it would obtain better value if it was listed overseas.

But in contrast to the dozen or so Australian Stock Exchange-listed companies that have opted for a dual listing on the London Stock Exchange’s Alternative Investment Market, Redback has transferred its domicile to the TSX Venture exchange in Toronto.

“The financial institutions there don’t take you seriously unless they believe you are really a North American company,” Mr Hunt said.

He believes Redback is the first ASX company to take this option and he understands other Australian companies are looking to follow its lead.

The transfer prompted Mr Hunt to step down as chairman of Redback, though he has continued as a director.

Mr Hunt became chairman of A1 Minerals last October in advance of the company’s $3.5 million initial public offering.

The company has enjoyed strong support since listing, with its shares rising from an issue price of 20 cents to current levels around 60 cents.

The company is continuing a drilling program at Brightstar east of Laverton, with the latest results showing “more high grade, near-surface mineralisation” and is exploring its Narnoo prospects further south.

Reliance Mining is one of several junior mining companies to purchase nickel properties near Kambalda that were formerly mined by WMC Resources. Mr Hunt helped Reliance when it acquired the Beta Hunt nickel project last September.

A current project for Mr Hunt is advising Precious Metals Australia chairman Roderick Smith in the dispute with Swiss mining giant Xstrata, PMA’s former partner in the Windimurra vanadium project.

PMA has challenged Xstrata’s recent decision to sell Windimurra’s plant and equipment, ending any hope of reopening the mothballed mine.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

Subscription Options