Mwana ramps up nickel sales

HARARE - Pan African miner Mwana Africa Plc (Mwana) says nickel in concentrate sales from its Zimbabwe-based Trojan mine went up 76 percent more to 2,651 tonnes in the quarter ended December 2013.

During the period under review, Trojan owned by the group’s subsidiary Bindura Nickel Corporation (BNC) — recorded a 74 percent growth in revenue to $24,5 million, driven by the enhanced sales volumes.

Cash costs increased from $10,390 to $11,819 per tonne.

Trojan, which had been mothballed for nearly four years due to depressed international nickel prices among other challenges, restarted production in 2012.

However, the Aim-listed resources concern’s gold miner, Freda Rebecca, produced 13 072 ounces of the yellow metal, a 25 percent decrease from prior comparable quarter.

It attributed the slump to alterations at the mill — resulting in some downtime — but said should lead to increased throughput and a decreased head grade. “The company has noted improved throughput following the modifications to the mill and does not anticipate that the issues with head grade will continue into the fourth quarter,” said Mwana.

At the Klipspringer diamond mine in South Africa, mining and treatment operations started on October 7 last year and so far the slimes retreatment programme has produced 6 114 carats at an average price $22,75 per carat.

Steady State production at the plant of 22 560 tonnes per month is planned from February 2014 onwards.
Kalaa Mpinga, Mwana’s chief executive, said the current quarter registered mixed fortunes for the Africa-focused mining giant.

“We are very pleased with the progress at Trojan and this demonstrates the robustness of the asset.  Freda Rebecca, however, had a difficult quarter due to reduced mill availabilities.

“The proceeds from diamond sales will contribute to the care and maintenance costs at Klipspringer,” he said.

“Management time will continue to be focused on operational improvements and delivery of the ongoing cost-cutting exercise during the fourth quarter.”

Mwana is a pan-African, multi-commodity mining and development company whose principal operations and exploration activities cover gold, nickel, copper and diamonds in Zimbabwe, the DRC and South Africa.

The group’s Freda Rebecca gold mine, having restarted operations in 2009, produced 65,350 ounces of gold in the 12 months to March 2013. In October 2013, Mwana announced that the gold mineral resource at its Zani Kodo project in Democratic Republic of Congo had increased to 2,975 million ounces.

In February last year, Mwana announced it had signed a joint venture agreement with Zhejiang Hailiang Company Limited to jointly explore some of its copper licence areas in the Katanga Province of the DRC.

The restart of operations at the Trojan Mine followed four years during which all of the BNC assets were on care and maintenance.

In September 2012, BNC carried out a restructuring and recapitalisation involving $23 million being invested into BNC which has allowed it to restart the Trojan mine.

First sale of concentrate to Glencore took place in April 2013.

Comments (3)

"Kalaa Mpinga, Mwana's chief executive", not so mr Editor, he's the Chairman

Reader - 23 January 2014

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Clean Water - 23 January 2014

We still waiting to read anything about the proposed lifetime of all of these mines whcih is the only what is importend and nothing else but for this they never come out clearly.

Emperor - 23 January 2014

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