ARM sees Zambia copper mine by 2011: paper Tue Sep 1, 2009 6

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Message Mar 1 Sep 2009 08:22

ARM sees Zambia copper mine by 2011: paper Tue Sep 1, 2009 6

ARM sees Zambia copper mine by 2011: paper
Tue Sep 1, 2009 6:09am GMT
Print | Single Page[-] Text [+] JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South African diversified miner African Rainbow Minerals (ARM) sees long-term opportunities in copper and plans to open a new mine at Konkola North in Zambia by 2011, Business Day quoted ARM as saying.
The company completed a bankable feasibility study for a mine with an annual capacity of 45,000 tonnes of refined copper and a life of more than 20 years, the paper reported on Tuesday.

ARM said on Monday it plans to spend more than 8 billion rand on growth projects in the next three years, adding that it saw acquisition opportunities in Angola and Zimbabwe.

The company reported a 43 percent fall in full-year earnings to end-June, but said that the worst of the global crisis was over and that it expected demand for some of its commodities to rise.

ARM has interests in platinum, manganese, iron ore, chrome, nickel and coal.
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Message Jeu 3 Sep 2009 19:07

Arm aiming for 100 000 t/y copper in 5 years

Arm aiming for 100 000 t/y copper in 5 years

By: Martin Creamer
3rd September 2009
Updated 1 hour 17 minutes ago

JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – Diversified miner African Rainbow Minerals (Arm) aims to be producing at least 100 000 t/y of copper in five years, CEO André Wilkens tells Mining Weekly Online.

Wilkens says that the company is already in a sweet spot with the commodities it has, which include coal, manganese, iron-ore, platinum, nickel and chrome, and now copper is poised to provide a tailwind.

Copper production is expected to begin in years two and three in the next three years, but will still have to grow significantly.

"We certainly want to get to at least 100 000 t of copper a year over the next five years," Wilkens confides.

The company has a joint venture with South American major Vale and intends focusing initially on the assets that were in Arm's former Teal exploration company, and then look for other opportunities to work together.

Vale/Arm's primary projects are in Zambia at the Konkola North copper project and in copper/cobalt in the Kalumines prospect in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

"Copper is a very good commodity to be in and we are going to keep out eyes open and try to expand in copper as soon as possible," Wilkens tells Mining Weekly Online.

In its overall spread of its commodities, Arm will be investing R8-billion in the next three years, and its partners another R8-billion, as Arm owns 50% stakes in a series of partnerships with several blue-chip companies.

The capital investment creates a further expansion to its iron-ore mine by another six-million tons plus arrival at the commissioning point later this year for the low-cost new local coal mine, Goedgevonden.

The capital investment also embraces the company's large-scale new Nkomati nickel mine, where commissioning has begun.

"We believe that those projects are well timed in terms of the market conditions we are seeing.

"All our operations are below the 50% percentile on the cost curve, which is going to give us very good margins going forward. We have also got volume growth and cost reductions in all commodities," Wilkens says.

The company is bullish on its new coal dragline operation at Goedgevonden, which is destined to be one of the lower cost operations.

Half of Goedgevonen's coal will be exported and the other half will be sold locally.

"The prices we are going to get for our coal are very good because we actually deliver a washed and sized coal product, the type of product that Eskom needs," he adds

Together with its partner Xstrata Coal, Arm is considering other new coal-mining projects, on which feasibility is still to be finalised.

IRON-ORE

One reason why the iron-ore has done well - building up from a six-million-ton operation to a ten-million-ton-operation, and now going to 16-million tons a year - is because of the high quality of the material, a large percentage of which is lumpy ore.

"We've also got long-term relationships, some more than 50-years old, and they have stuck to the agreements and we've delivered very well in the last year," Wilkens says.

Of Arm's platinum operations, Two Rivers and Modikwa, the company has been able to reduce costs significantly at Modikwa, where a 30% saving has been achieved in the last five months, and there is potential to achieve better recoveries at Two Rivers.

"We have an agreement with Impala to add one of the adjacent orebodies into Two Rivers. We think platinum is a very good metal to have long term," Wilkens says.

With nickel, Arm is going to be set fairly low on the cost curve with the R3,3-billion Nkomati expansion project.

With Arm's nickel cost base at $3,50/lb and the current nickel price north of $8/lb, Arm expects to have good margins.

"We think the timing of Nkomati will fall into line with the nickel market," says Wilkens.

On the company's good cash position, Wilkens commented: "In October, we sat down with our teams and said no business is going to burn cash and we've achieved the objective for the year.

"There is market-to-market accounting that puts platinum into the negative, while they are really cash positive, and that has helped us with our cash management, helped us to reduce our loans. We are sitting at a 1% debt-to-equity ratio and we have no immediate requirements to raise any further funding, we've got everything that we need.

"We had to reorganise to avoid cash burn, but with the growth projects, we actually create many more jobs. In the last two years and over the next three years, we will have created two jobs every day of the year, and we were able to move some of our people around in the group, which means a lot less reduction in labour," Wilkens says.

The company has restructured its R967-million corporate loan, which was due for refinancing, because it needs more money to finance the Nkomati project and, together with Norilsk Nickel, Arm decided to fund the project completely.

"The rand is very strong and there are factors that indicate that, over the next two years, it will actually weaken, but we have a robust plan, even in a strong rand environment," Wilkens adds.

http://www.miningweekly.com/article/div ... 2009-09-02
« L'aventure n'existe pas. Elle est dans l'esprit de celui qui la poursuit, et dès qu'il peut la toucher du doigt, elle s'évanouit pour renaître bien plus loin, sous une autre forme, aux limites de l'imagination. »
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Message Jeu 3 Sep 2009 21:16

ARM :Konkola north

Zimbabwe: SA Mining Giant to Invest R8 Billion in Country

Harare — SOUTH African-based mining giant, African Rainbow Minerals, has earmarked R8 billion to take up mining investment opportunities in Zimbabwe, it has emerged.

ARM told South African media that the company has interests in platinum, manganese, iron ore, chrome, nickel and coal. The mining giant also indicated in May this year that it was considering significant investment opportunities in Zimbabwe's vast platinum resources.

Zimbabwe holds the second largest platinum deposits that have largely remained untapped. The announcement by the mining group comes after it announced its plans to open a new mine at Konkola North in Zambia by 2011.

The company completed a bankable feasibility study for a mine with an annual capacity of 45 000 tonnes of refined copper and a life of more than 20 years. ARM reported a 43 percent fall in full-year earnings to end-June, but said that the worst of the global crisis was over and that it expected demand for some of its commodities to rise.

The mining firm is presently locked in negotiations for a platinum joint venture in Zimbabwe with Brazil resources giant, Companhia Vale do Rio Doce (Vale). Negotiations are said to be in advanced stage.

ARM undertook a successful restructuring transaction with Vale and Teal Exploration Limited that helped put basic earnings per share ahead of declining headline earnings per share for the financial period ending 30 June 2009. The Teal transaction helped cement ties between the South African miner and the Brazilian resources giant as they set to explore Zimbabwe's mining sector.

ARM chief executive officer, Patrice Motsepe has led South African delegations to scout for opportunities in Zimbabwe's mining sector. Minister of Mines and Mining Development Mr Obert Mpofu told a mining conference in South Africa recently that the country was reviewing its mining laws, a move that has created a scramble for mining in Zimbabwe.

Central African Gold also announced that they would soon outline a financing plan for the company that will allow it to restart gold mining in Zimbabwe. The fund-raising will be designed to settle a US$5 million debt as well as to resume operations.

CAG said Zimbabwe would remain its best bet for quick revenue generation in the near term. Toronto Stock Exchange listed miner, New Dawn, also indicated that they are repositioning themselves as a Zimba-bwean focused gold exploration and mining development group.

Zimbabwe of late has become an optional destination for mining investors after South Africa experienced a deteriorating environment.

Considerably, over the past year, South Africa suffered because of a dramatic increase in overall operating costs, in particularly labour, consumables and power.

http://allafrica.com/stories/200909030403.html
« L'aventure n'existe pas. Elle est dans l'esprit de celui qui la poursuit, et dès qu'il peut la toucher du doigt, elle s'évanouit pour renaître bien plus loin, sous une autre forme, aux limites de l'imagination. »
( Pierre Mac Orlan )

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