The West

Aquila Resources' Como office.

China's Baosteel and Queensland-based rail operator Aurizon will move to compulsory acquisition of Aquila Resources after successfully securing more than 90 per cent of the company's stock.

Aquila's board members and major shareholders have all agreed to sell into the $3.40-a-share offer, leaving only minor shareholders as the last remaining holdouts.

However, under the Corporations Act, Baosteel and Aurizon can now move to compulsory acquisition after having secured more than 90 per cent of the Aquila's issued capital.

Baosteel chairman Zhihao Dai said the company was delighted with the overwhelming support received from Aquila shareholders for the offer and looked forward to working with Aurizon, State and Federal Governments, and Aquila's joint venture partners to progress the development of the West Pilbara Iron Ore Project and the Eagle Downs Hard Coking Coal Project, for the benefit of both Australia and China.

Aurizon managing director Lance Hockridge said the deal represented an unprecedented opportunity for Aurizon to participate in the development of new, world-class rail and port infrastructure for a range of potential customers.

"The Baosteel/Aurizon investment model has the scale, strength and infrastructure development expertise to unlock under-developed Australian resource projects and deliver new investment, jobs and regional wealth, and royalty streams for government," he said.

Aquila shares were up one cent to $3.40 at 9.25am.

The West Australian

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