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Coalspur Mines’ receives board approval for $445m Canadian coal project

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The board of thermal coal development company Coalspur Mines has approved the C$458m ($445m) development plan for its Vista Coal project in Canada.

The first phase of the development plan involves construction and commissioning of a six-million-tons-per annum capacity thermal coal facility by mid-2015, with the capability to expand to 12 million tons per annum.

The company said that the final Phase 1 facility and design is in line with its regulatory application for Vista Phase 1 which is currently under final review with the Alberta regulators.

Coalspur president and CEO Gill Winckler said that the current downturn in the commodities industry with the associated pressure on commodity prices and service industries provided the company with an opportunity as it finalised its project execution strategy and capital.

"This is evident through our capital efficiency of C$76 per tonne of capacity, which is very competitive with comparable thermal coal greenfield and brownfield expansion projects," he said.

"We continue to make good progress with the Alberta regulators. The regulatory approval process is taking longer than anticipated, however the review process is in its final stages and we remain confident that we will be able to commence construction in the coming months and deliver our first coal in mid 2015," Winckler added.