Officials at Leighton Holdings, one of world’s No. 1 mining industry contractors, announced last week they had ceased operations at two South Kalimantan mines—both majority-owned by Bumi Resources—over non-reimbursement for “net project receivables.”
Bumi Resources retaliated, saying it fully paid PT Thiess Contractors Indonesia, a Leighton subsidiary, and that the suspension “breaks norms and harms the local economy.”
Bumi representatives, already struggling from low coal prices owing to slow growth in China, huge debts and corporate governance disputes, said they have launched a legal injunction against Thiess in Australia’s Queensland Supreme Court.
Indonesia’s influential Bakrie family is trying to reassert control over Jakarta-listed Bumi by unwinding part of the $3 billion deal under which it injected a 29% ownership of the company into U.K.-listed Bumi, a shell set up by British scion and financier Nathaniel Rothschild.