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Minmetals Resources chief executive officer Andrew Michelmore.BOBBY YIP

Minmetals Resources' official bid for Equinox Minerals is still nowhere to be seen, and now Minmetals has some serious competition in the form of a planned $7.3-billion bid from Barrick Gold Corp. that blows the Minmetals proposal out of the water.

So where is the Minmetals bid for Equinox ? To recap, Minmetals said on April 3 it would be mailed in three weeks. That deadline came and went Sunday. The problem, according to those in the know, is that despite Minmetals trumpeting in a press release that it had financing lined up, it wasn't fully documented. And that means no bid under Canadian rules, which require unsolicited bids to be fully financed.

Then, the foot-dragging on the financing caused the company to run into the four-day Easter long weekend in Hong Kong. That was a problem because it meant the bid couldn't get a required review from the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, where Minmetals is listed. That means that Minmetals is looking at a little later this week at the earliest.

Barrick , by contrast, is moving a little faster. It plans to mail its offer Tuesday, one day after announcing it.

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