Sirius Minerals shares up 6% after Qatar supply deal

Sirius Minerals' fertilizer mine site

Shares of Scarborough-based Sirius Minerals plc, the firm behind the controversial $5 billion fertilizer mine in North Yorkshire, rose about 6% on Friday after it said it entered an exclusive 10-year supply agreement with state-owned Qatar Chemical and Petrochemical Marketing and Distribution Company (Muntajat).

The agreement is for the sale and distribution of volumes of POLY4 into Africa (except Nigeria and Egypt), Australia, New Zealand and certain Middle-Eastern and Asian territories.

Sirius CEO Chris Fraser said: “We are delighted to expand our growing partnership with Qatar through this long-term supply agreement with Muntajat.  

“Qatar is already a major investor in Sirius via QIA and Sirius is working with Muntajat to explore the downstream combination of POLY4 with nitrogen products in Qatar and/or the United Kingdom to create a value-added multi-nutrient fertilizer.”

Muntajat CEO Abdulrahman Ali Al-Abdulla said: “We see tremendous potential in POLY4 and Sirius’ Project which will enable us to bring this multi-nutrient product to our extensive global customer network. 

“The addition of POLY4 will complement our existing portfolio and will enable us to provide a more complete solution to our customers in these important markets by adding additional macro-nutrients to our portfolio.”

Sirius added: “In addition to the agreement, Sirius is working with Muntajat to explore the downstream combination of POLY4 with nitrogen products in Qatar and/or the United Kingdom to create a value-added multi-nutrient fertilizer. 

“The agreement expands the company’s existing relationship with the state of Qatar, which, through the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), is one of the largest investors in Sirius.”

On September 17, shares of Sirius Minerals fell more than 50% after it said it will slow down the development of the mine and cancel a planned $500 million bond sale.

Sirius said it was seeking a “major strategic partner” for the project, which supports about 1,200 jobs.

The $500 million bond sale was required to unlock a $2.5 billion financing package for the project.

Sirius said the UK government declined to provide support to facilitate the financing of the project.