Canadian minings company Ivanhoe Mines announced that it is now advancing with the ramp-up of the concentrator at the Kamoa-Kakula mine, in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), to achieve an annual nameplate capacity of 3.8mn mt. The mine started its copper concentrate production on May 25 after completing underground development.
The mining crew has so far achieved exploration of 406,000mt of ore grading 5.77mt copper in May. The initial batch of copper concentrates has been shipped to a nearby copper smelter.
Kamoa Copper has signed a ten-year agreement with Lualaba Copper Smelter, located outside the town of Kolwezi, for the processing of a portion of Kamoa’s copper concentrate production.
Ivanhoe mine is proceeding with the development for Phase 2 at the Kamoa-Kakula project to achieve 7.6mn mt production. Phase 2 will be completed by the third quarter of next year.
Ivanhoe has set its guidance for copper concentrate production at 80,000 -95,000mt for the rest of the year.
Kamoa- Kakula Phase 1 is set to produce about 200,000 mt of copper annually, while phases 1 and 2 combined will produce about 400,000mt annually.
Considering the soaring copper prices, Ivanhoe and partner Zijin is exploring the acceleration of the Kamoa-Kakula Phase 3 concentrator to achieve expansion up to 11.4mn mt from 7.6mn mt a year. The expansion will be achieved after expanding mining operations at Kansoko, or new mining areas at Kamoa North (including the Bonanza zone) and Kakula West.
The Kamoa-Kakula project is a joint venture between Ivanhoe and Zijing Mining Group having 39.6pc stake each, 0.8pc held by Crystal River Global Limited and 20pc share by the DRC government.