Recent interesting mining related news stories.
Local people have come out gainst Mwembeshi Resources plan to establish a multi-million dollar to damage in Lower Zambezi National Park. The bribes appear to have failed this time.
Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) plans to extend the life at its Nchanga operation, one of its biggest mines, by more than 25 years. The company is investing in modern methods to access copper from an upper ore body beyond 2013, when mining at the site would otherwise have ended. The total cost of the project, expected to add 35 000 t/y of copper to KCM’s output, is $180-million, and KCM has so far spent about $70-million. KCM produced 200 000 t of copper in total in 2011/2012 and has broader plans to raise production to 400 000 t/y in the next four to five years. Those plans include completion of its flagship Konkola Deep Mining Project by December this year, ramping up copper production there to 200 000t from the current 15 000. The company has spent close to $1-billion on that project.
Mopani Copper Mines, majority owned by Glencore International Plc, is wrapping up a feasibility study which could see it sink $1.5 billion into another copper project. The investment, in addition to $2 billion already invested to upgrade operations, would double Mopani’s underground production of copper to 150,000 tonnes per annum. Preliminary indications from the feasibility study showed that mine life at both its Nkana and Mufulira operations would be extended beyond 30 years with this new investment, The timing of this announcement is not entirely random, as evidenced by this line from the CEO : "Clearly this goes back to having a stable fiscal regime so that we can pay back the loans. As long as we can have a very stable environment I think we will be here for a long time".