The AVZ Minerals Ltd (ASX: AVZ) share price was scheduled to return to trade on Wednesday morning.
However, as was widely expected, the lithium miner has failed to emerge from its suspension.
What’s happen with the AVZ share price?
Last month, the AVZ share price was placed in a trading halt and subsequent suspension at the company’s request.
This is because the company been hit with arbitration proceedings by Jin Cheng Mining Company in the International Chamber of Commerce in Paris.
Jin Cheng is seeking to be recognised as a shareholder of Dathcom Mining, which is the owner of the Manono Lithium and Tin Project in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The worst-case scenario could see AVZ have its shareholding in the project reduced to just 36%.
This would have huge consequences for the valuation of the company and therefore the AVZ share price, which explains why its shares have been suspended.
What’s the latest?
This morning, AVZ requested that its shares remain suspended for the entire month of June while the matter is (hopefully) resolved.
In addition, the company revealed that completion of its deal to sell a 24% stake in the project to Suzhou CATH Energy Technologies has been delayed until the end of July.
The release explains:
The Company confirms that the parties to the TIA have agreed to amend the end date to 31 July 2022 to provide for completion of closure formalities. The parties are committed to close the TIA as early as practically possible to progress the development of the Manono Lithium and Tin Project.
All in all, these are difficult times for the company and its shareholders. But, unfortunately, it once again demonstrates why investing in companies operating in countries such as the Democratic Republic of the Congo carry very high risks.
For reference, Transparency International ranks the country as one of the most corrupt in the world, just a touch better than Afghanistan and North Korea. Would you invest your hard-earned money in these countries? Probably not.