COLUMBUS, Ohio, Jan. 29, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Oxford Resource Partners, LP (NYSE: OXF) (the "Partnership" or "Oxford") determined, based upon continued weakness in the coal markets, to suspend the cash distributions on both its common and subordinated units for its fourth quarter ended December 31, 2012. In making this decision, the Board concluded that it was in the best interests of the Partnership to further preserve liquidity.
Despite the challenging environment, the Partnership continues to benefit from its low-cost production profile and strategic importance to its customers. The Partnership's sales book is 98 percent committed and priced for 2013 based on currently anticipated levels of production.
The Partnership continues to pursue opportunities to enhance its liquidity, including the sale of certain excess Illinois Basin equipment. The Partnership is also pursuing the refinancing of its credit facility, and plans to provide an update on that effort when it announces its financial results for the fourth quarter of 2012, which the Partnership intends to do in early to mid-March 2013.
Under the Partnership's partnership agreement, arrearage amounts resulting from suspension of the common units distribution accumulate. Arrearage amounts resulting from suspension of the subordinated units distribution do not accumulate. In the future as distributions are made for any quarter, the first priority is to pay the then minimum quarterly distribution to common unitholders. Any additional distribution amounts paid at that time are then paid to common unitholders until their previously unpaid accumulated arrearage amounts have been paid in full.About Oxford Resource Partners, LP Oxford Resource Partners, LP is a low-cost producer of high value steam coal in Northern Appalachia and the Illinois Basin. Oxford markets its coal primarily to large electric utilities with coal-fired, base-load scrubbed power plants under long-term coal sales contracts. The Partnership is headquartered in Columbus, Ohio. For more information about Oxford Resource Partners, LP (NYSE: OXF), please visit www.OxfordResources.com. Financial and other information about the Partnership is routinely posted on and accessible at www.OxfordResources.com. This announcement is intended to be a qualified notice under Treasury Regulation Section 1.1446-4(b), with 100% of the Partnership's distributions to foreign investors attributable to income that is effectively connected with a United States trade or business. Accordingly, the Partnership's distributions to foreign investors are subject to federal income tax withholding at the highest applicable tax rate. FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS: Except for historical information, statements made in this press release are "forward-looking statements." All statements, other than statements of historical facts, included in this press release that address activities, events or developments that the Partnership expects, believes or anticipates will or may occur in the future are forward-looking statements. These statements are based on certain assumptions made by the Partnership based on its management's experience and perception of historical trends, current conditions, expected future developments and other factors the Partnership's management believes are appropriate under the circumstances. Such statements are subject to a number of assumptions, risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond the Partnership's control, which may cause actual results to differ materially from those implied or expressed by the forward-looking statements. These risks, uncertainties and contingencies include, but are not limited to, the following: productivity levels, margins earned and the level of operating costs; weakness in global economic conditions or in customers' industries; changes in governmental regulation of the mining industry or the electric power industry and the increased costs of complying with those changes; decreases in demand for electricity and changes in coal consumption patterns of U.S. electric power generators; the Partnership's dependence on a limited number of customers; the Partnership's inability to enter into new long-term coal sales contracts at attractive prices and the renewal and other risks associated with the Partnership's existing long-term coal sales contracts, including risks related to adjustments to price, volume or other terms of those contracts; difficulties in collecting the Partnership's receivables because of credit or financial problems of major customers, and customer bankruptcies, cancellations or breaches to existing contracts or other failures to perform; the Partnership's ability to acquire additional coal reserves; the Partnership's ability to respond to increased competition within the coal industry; fluctuations in coal demand, prices and availability due to labor and transportation costs and disruptions, equipment availability, governmental regulations, including those pertaining to carbon dioxide emissions, and other factors; significant costs imposed on the Partnership's mining operations by extensive and frequently changing environmental laws and regulations, and greater than expected environmental regulations, costs and liabilities; legislation and regulatory and related judicial decisions and interpretations including issues pertaining to climate change and miner health and safety; a variety of operational, geologic, permitting, labor and weather-related factors, including those pertaining to both our mining operations and our underground coal reserves that we do not operate; limitations in the cash distributions the Partnership receives from its majority-owned subsidiary, Harrison Resources, LLC, and the ability of Harrison Resources, LLC to acquire additional reserves on economical terms from CONSOL Energy Inc. in the future; the potential for inaccuracies in estimates of the Partnership's coal reserves, which could result in lower than expected revenues or higher than expected costs; the accuracy of the assumptions underlying the Partnership's reclamation and mine closure obligations; liquidity constraints, including those resulting from the cost or unavailability of financing due to current capital markets conditions; risks associated with major mine-related accidents; results of litigation, including claims not yet asserted; the Partnership's ability to attract and retain key management personnel; greater than expected shortage of skilled labor; the Partnership's ability to maintain satisfactory relations with employees; and failure to obtain, maintain or renew security arrangements, such as surety bonds or letters of credit, in a timely manner and on acceptable terms. The Partnership undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements. Readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements, which reflect management's views only as of the date hereof. Further information on risks and uncertainties is available in the Partnership's periodic reports filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission or otherwise publicly disseminated by the Partnership.