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B2Gold denies interest in Metallon's Shamva gold mine

B2Gold Corp. CEO Clive Johnson denied that the company was considering buying Metallon Corp. Ltd.'s inactive Shamva gold mine in Zimbabwe.

Johnson was responding to a May 23 Bloomberg News report indicating that B2Gold was willing to pay one-third of Shamva's book value, estimated seven years ago at about US$167 million, and spend up to US$200 million to develop the mine.

The publication, citing unnamed sources, added that a deal would only push through if B2Gold secures an exemption from a law requiring miners to sell their output to Zimbabwe's central bank.

Johnson said the company is not pursuing "material development or production mergers or acquisitions" as it focuses on developing its existing projects and exploring for global opportunities, reported May 24.

The statement was a reiteration of Johnson's comments in early May when he ruled out possible deals: "Spread the word—no M&A from us," he said during an earnings call.

Metallon recently filed a US$132 million lawsuit against the central bank over alleged unremitted payments.