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Alpha Energy calls for trading halt, fails to clear US$3.1m debt on time

CATALIST-LISTED Alpha Energy called for an immediate trading halt on Monday night over its failure to repay US$3.1 million to ING Capital on Oct 1. 

The oil exploration and production firm had received a notice from ING Capital on Nov 14 to "accelerate" the firm's indebtedness, due to its failure to make payment of approximately US$3.1 million on Oct 1 and to declare the entire principal sum of all debt owed to ING Capital immediately due and payable, said the firm in a statement on Monday. 

Earlier in May, Alpha Energy had restructured a loan it took from ING Capital in 2015 to fund the 95 per cent of tax credits available to working interest owners of its Mustang oilfield in Alaska. The firm, along with other loan parties – TP North Slope Development (TPNSD) as borrower and BRPC as operator – owed ING Capital a loan balance of US$13.3 million as at June 7. 

Under the agreement, Alpha Energy and TPNSD have to make repayments to ING Capital in quarterly instalments of US$600,000 starting June 15, 2020. This is the second time the loan parties restructured the loan facility, the last being via a term sheet entered in Sept 6, 2018. Its debt to ING Capital had matured on May 1, 2017.

Alpha Energy said it is currently engaging in further negotiations with ING Capital which are "sensitive in nature" and involve "key assets" of the firm. To avoid any "irregular movement" in share price and prevent "irregular trading activities that may result from the leakage of any information", the firm has called for the trading of its shares to be suspended with immediate effect. 

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Alpha Energy shares closed flat at S$0.032 on Monday.

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