Chinalco Yunnan Copper Resources will seek a new managing director and chief executive officer after the resignation of two of its executive management team. Jason Beckton will step down from his position as managing director from January 1.

Zewen Yang will temporarily expand his existing executive director role and will assume the position of acting chief executive officer while the Board seeks a suitable person to replace Jason Beckton. Board member Norm Zillman has also stepped down from his position effective immediately.

CYU chairman Zhihua Yao says, “The directors of CYU wish to thank Norm and Jason for their long-term service and contribution to the company.”

The company’s exploration manager Richard Hatcher will be appointed as an executive director to replace Norm Zillman. Richard has served CYU for four years and has 18 years’ experience in gold, base metals, diamond, petroleum and lateritic nickel exploration and project development in Australia, the South Pacific, New Zealand and Central America.

The remainder of the CYU executive team will remain in place with a recent promotion of Matthew Price to the position of Chile country manager, which is the new region of focus for the company.

CYU says it has set a new path forward for the company which has the full support of its major shareholder (43%) Chinalco. The strategy involves diversifying the company’s assets within the exploration and mining sector, through its relationship with Chinalco.

CYU will focus on the development of key existing exploration and advanced projects, with particular attention on Chile to expose investors to exploration opportunities for the advanced Mary Kathleen joint venture in Queensland, encompassing the Elaine Project.

“Our second arm of the strategy is to acquire or invest in near production resources where the full capabilities of Chinalco can be efficiently and effectively utilized. Chinalco’s support means that resource opportunities that would not normally be available to CYU can now be accessed,” says Zhihua Yao.

As part of the new focus all early stage exploration projects held by CYU are being reviewed to assess their commercial and geological risk reward attributes.

The company is also seeking to strengthen its Board and management team through the appointment of a new managing director with broad corporate, merger and acquisition experience in the resource sector.

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