Kodal Minerals has requested a temporary withdrawal from the planning process for its non-core phosphate and titanomagnetite project in southern Norway (the 'Kodal project'). This is in line with the company's strategy to prioritise development of its recently acquired high grade lithium projects in Mali and its wider gold portfolio in West Africa. The Kodal project was fully impaired by the company in its financial statements for the year ended 31 March 2015 in response to the dramatic fall in the price of iron ore. The company was seeking to continue to progress the planning process but was not undertaking any further exploration or development work on the Kodal project. The company has now determined to withdraw from the planning process so as to avoid expending further management time or incurring additional costs. The company has written to the relevant municipalities requesting a temporary withdrawal from the planning process on the basis that the Kodal project is not currently economically viable and that this is unlikely to change in the short term. The licences remain valid until July 2023 and the company may seek to restart the process if the economics of the project improve in the future. Chief executive Bernard Aylward said: "The excitement around, and potential value of, our recently acquired lithium assets in Mali, combined with the continued low level of the iron ore price, has prompted this pragmatic decision from the board. "We are now directing the majority of the company's capital and management time towards West Africa and the areas of the business which we believe hold the most near term value for shareholders and we look forward to providing news from this core portfolio of assets in due course."
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