JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) − Junior miner Continental Coal has started mine development activities at its 500 000 t/y Penumbra thermal coal project in South Africa’s Ermelo coalfield.
The company, which is listed in Australia, reported on Thursday that the key contractors appointed to complete the civil portion of the R284-million development have mobilsed to site.
Civil and earthworks associated with the initial box-cut excavation, terracing and pollution control works would be completed over the next three month. The decline development is forecast to start in late December.
The Penumbra mine is expected to start production in the second quarter of 2012, with full production to be reached in the third quarter.
The coal would be exported through the Richards Bay Coal Terminal under existing rail contracts, and would be sold to EDF Trading and other export offtake agreements, Continental reported.
The company already has two operating mines, Vlakvarkfontein and Ferreira, producing two-million tons a year of thermal coal for the export and domestic markets.
“It is hard to believe that less than 18 months ago the company was announcing the commencement of mine development activities at its first coal mine in South Africa, the Vlakvarkfontein coal mine, and we are now on track with our third coal mining operation all within three years of first acquiring coal projects in South Africa,” said CEO Don Turvey.
Continental Coal has previously announced plans to list on London’s Aim market.