JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – ASX-listed Bass Metals, which is developing the Graphmada large flake graphite mine, in Madagascar, has completed a major component of the recommissioning process at the project.
The mine is now nearing completion of Stage 1 of delivering a 100%-owned mine free of any serviceable debt. "With offtake agreements in place, producing premium large flake concentrates at a time of rising prices the mine is expected to be fully operational by March," the company said on Tuesday.
The completion of Stage 1 would establish Bass as one of only two ASX-listed producers and one of only four publically listed graphite producers globally. Bass has recently successfully completed a major component of the recommissioning process with first production achieved from the recommencement of drying and packaging operations from stockpiled wet product.
With the drying and packaging system fully operational, the mine now enters the final phase of its optimisation and refurbishment through the commencement of recommissioning activities at the process plant.
However, owing to cyclone activity in the southern Indian Ocean in January, shipping of the final electrical components and mining equipment were delayed, with a subsequent delay in completing the recommissioning of the process plant estimated at four to six weeks.
The team will use the additional time to perform a more thorough recommissioning process, allowing for each process plant component to be recommissioned individually to test that all components are fully functional, before recommissioning the process plant in its entirety in March, bringing the mine back into full time production.
Post recommissioning, the company would ramp up production over consecutive months with the aim being to reach 500 t/m of high-value graphite concentrates by May.
CEO Tim Mcmanus said the team would continue to be proactive during the final phases of recommissioning. "In addition to near-term cash flow from operations, with significant prospectivity at Andapa and being weeks away from beginning our field programme at Millie's Reward, the company is poised to deliver on long held key strategic objectives to create significant shareholder value this year."