Sumitomo Metal Mining exits Solomon Islands nickel exploration project

8th August 2017 By: Reuters

TOKYO – Japan's Sumitomo Metal Mining said on Tuesday it will withdraw from a nickel exploration project in the Solomon Islands owing to slumping nickel prices, harsh business circumstances and the outcome of legal proceedings.

Sumitomo Metal Mining, which began exploring in the Solomons in 2005, has been caught up in a six-year legal battle with Australia's Axiom Mining, which ended this year with neither company being granted the rights over a nickel deposit in Isabel province, it said.

"As a result of our comprehensive review of business circumstances, the final judgement in the legal proceedings and other factors, we have concluded that it is difficult for us to implement the project," Sumitomo said in a statement.