AVZ share price remains suspended, but a return is in sight

This lithium share won’t be returning to trade on Friday…

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Key points

  • The AVZ share price was due to return to trade today
  • However, more time is needed to resolve an ownership dispute
  • AVZ now expects its shares to return on 15 July

As was largely expected, the AVZ Minerals Ltd (ASX: AVZ) share price won’t be returning to trade on Friday.

The lithium developer’s shares have been suspended from trade since 9 May and will remain that way for a little longer.

What’s the latest on the AVZ Minerals share price?

This time last month, the company requested that the suspension of its shares be extended until 1 July while it sorted out an ownership dispute relating to the Manono Lithium Project.

However, with this dispute still unresolved, the company was not ready to let the AVZ share price return to action.

Though, the end is potentially in sight now. Rather than requesting another full month of suspension, the company has optimistically named 15 July as its return date this time around.

It commented:

AVZ Minerals Limited refers to the Company’s request for an extension to its voluntary suspension dated 1 June 2022, in relation to the finalisation and release of an announcement with respect to its mining and exploration rights for the Manono Lithium and Tin Project (Manono Project).

The Company advises that it is encouraged with the progress being made with its discussions with the DRC Government, although the subject of the initial trading halt request remains incomplete.

Accordingly, the Company requests a further extension to the voluntary suspension until the commencement of trade on 15 July 2022 or an earlier announcement to the market regarding its mining and exploration rights for the Manono Project.

Why are its shares suspended?

The AVZ share price is out of action while it battles proceeding relating to the “meritless claim that La Congolaise D’Exploitation Miniere SA (Cominière) has transferred a 15% interest in Dathcom Mining SA (Dathcom) to Jin Cheng.” Dathcom is the owner of the mining licence for the Manono Lithium Project.

Last month, AVZ commented on the matter. It said:

AVZ confirms that Cominière breached the preemptive rights of AVZI under the Shareholders Agreement by purporting to transfer a 15% interest to Jin Cheng, making it invalid and of no force or effect.

The Company has considered Jin Cheng’s claims in detail and considers them to be spurious in nature, without merit, containing fundamental and material errors, and having no substance or foundation in fact or law. The Company is continuing to take all necessary actions to resist these vexatious and meritless claims and to protect its and Dathcom’s interests.

Time will tell how the court views these claims and ultimately how much of the project AVZ ends up owning. There are fears it could be as little as 36%.

Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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