K+S sticking with Sask. potash mining project

Germany’s K+S, the world’s fourth-largest potash miner, will stick to its Saskatchewan expansion project following Russian rival Uralkali’s decision to abandon an export cartel that led to expectations of a slump in potash prices.

Uralkali last week sent shock waves through the potash industry by abandoning an export joint-venture with Belaruskali and forecasting a more then 25 per cent slide in the price of potash to below US$300 per tonne.

“Our (Canadian) Legacy project is on track, we will not call this important venture into question in response to mere speculation,” CEO Norbert Steiner said in a statement Tuesday.

Analysts had expected K+S to further postpone its planned C$4.1 billion investment in the new mine known as Legacy, sited in the Saskatchewan RM of Dufferin, about 70 km northwest of Regina.

In April, it said the venture would absorb a quarter more investment and that start of production would be delayed by half a year until mid-2016.

K+S, also the world’s largest salt supplier, also scrapped its outlook for slightly higher adjusted earnings before interest and tax in 2013. — Reuters

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