OSLO, Dec 8 (Reuters) - Iron ore miner Northland Resources SE has filed for bankruptcy with more than $650 million in debt following a failed attempt to refinance the business, the Oslo-listed company said in a statement on Monday.
“The dramatic fall in iron ore prices this year made it impossible to raise the required financing, which was a prerequisite for continued operations,” Northland board Chairman Olav Fjell said.
In its third-quarter earnings report last month Northland said its total debts by the end of September stood at $657 million, while cash and cash equivalents were $10.5 million.
Spot iron ore prices have fallen more than 47 percent this year as large, low-cost miners such as Vale, Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton boosted output amid slowing demand growth in top buyer China.
Northland’s key mining assets are located in northern Sweden and Finland. The development of its projects has been plagued by cost overruns.
Northland Resources SE’s bankruptcy filing included subsidiaries Northland Sweden AB, Northland Resources AB, Northland Logistics AB, Northland Logistics AS, Northland Mines OY and Northland Exploration Finland OY.
The Oslo Bourse said trading in Northland’s shares had been suspended. (Reporting by Terje Solsvik; editing by Susan Thomas)