Mozambique coal train attack, R200m Evander gold project, dump retreat, closure vision

11th April 2014

By: Martin Creamer

Creamer Media Editor


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The current insecurity in central Mozambique directly affected the country’s coal mining sector for the first time at the beginning of the month when a Vale Mozambique freight train from the company’s mine at Moatize was fired on. Read on page 19 of this edition of Mining Weekly of freight operations being suspended and the area being scoured by Mozambique security forces after the locomotive driver was wounded. The fingered opposition party, Renamo, has denied any involvement in this attack and other attacks, which are said to be averaging two a day in the Sofala province.

London- and Johannesburg-listed Pan African Resources has approved a capital expenditure of R200-million for the construction of a tailings project at the Evander gold mine, which it acquired from Harmony Gold a year ago. Read on page 18 of this edition of Mining Weekly of the project being poised to contribute 10 000 oz/y to Evander’s gold production from June at a low cash cost of $800/oz. As a gold loan of 15 700 oz from Absa Bank and Pan African will fully fund the project, the impact of the cost of construction on Pan African’s other cash flows will be negligible. The loan will be repaid in quarterly instalments over a four-year period, starting in August. The project, which will make use of gold tailings that were deposited on the nearby Kinross tailings storage facility over many years, will retreat 2.16-million tons of gold tailings a year for the next 14 years. The tailings, situated next to the Kinross metallurgical processing plant, fall within the tenure of the Evander mining right. Commissioning will begin in January on a mineral reserve of 369 000 oz and a resource of 597 000 oz. The 2 800 kWh electric power requirement will be sourced as part of the current Kinross plant power reticulation. A remaining tailings mineral resource of 1.5-million ounces on the Evander mining right area presents the potential for a larger, future tailings retreatment plant.

South Africa-focused tailings extractor Mintails, the ASX-listed company with access to 200-million tons of slime and tailings on the West Rand, estimates that there are some 5.5-billion tons of gold mine tailings spread over Johannesburg’s goldfields, from the Western basin to the Central and Eastern basins. Read on page 16 of this edition of Mining Weekly of the dump retreatment and mine closure company having invested R1.5-billion in retreatment opera- tions to date as part of overall mine closure operations. Mintails rehabilitates mining areas using the closure-mining model, which engages a wide group of stakeholders. The aim is to extend the life of the gold mining and, at the same time, facilitate a smooth transition from the mining to the postmining economy. The 30-million-ton single deposition facility – the West Wits pit – will meet Mintails’ deposition requirements for at least the next five years and considera- tion is being given to the establishment of a wind farm on top of the rehabilitated West Wits pit.

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Edited by Martin Zhuwakinyu
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor


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