Message Jeu 3 Oct 2013 14:36

Mopani extends lifespan with $1.3bn investment

MOPANI Copper Mines (MCM) will invest an additional US$1.3 billion in world-class operating assets at Mufulira and Nkana mines whose lifespan will be extended by 25 years.
MCM chief executive officer Danny Callow said a direct injection of additional capital would be invested in its operations between 2013 and 2017.
Mr Callow said when he presented a paper at the African Copper conference held in Lusaka recently that the mining company would invest in the operating assets and extension of the mine life by at least 25 years.
With an additional investment, it was expected that there would be job creation for the construction phase, with additional increased ore production and subsequent cathode outturn reaching 1.4 tonnes.
Mr Callow said the mining company had this year continued with the expansion project in which $361 million capital had been pumped.
“Current Mopani resources at Nkana and Mufulira have in excess of 20 years, but the existing infrastructure is not economically viable,” he said.
He said the mining company would replace existing shaft systems with modern, world-class assets with additional two 2,000 metre deep shaft systems to complement the Synclinorium Project, world-class concentrator to replace Nkana concentrator of 1934 and further close inefficient shaft systems as soon as possible.
Mr Callow said the project was expected to cost the mining company $800 million over three-and-a-half years.
“This project will increase hoisting capacity from the current six tonnes to 11 tonnes per annum and the potential increase in copper output by 50 per cent,” Mr Callow said.
He said the project would further give the mining company an opportunity to expand smelting capacity to meet concentrate demand and increase economic life by 20 years.
He said mining taxes represented 75 per cent of total Government tax collections by 2012, which reflects the exhaustion of capital allowances, increased mining production, and higher fiscal rates implemented since 2008.