Katanga Mining’s 75pc-owned subsidiary Kamoto Copper Company (KCC) projects 244,940mt of copper production this year, should favorable mining conditions, logistics and macro-economic factors align.
In its earnings report, KCC said it will continue its “operational excellence” program this year to make mining and processing more efficient, as well as to cut costs and recover more copper. The program, which is slated for completion in 2022, is expected raise copper output to nearly 272,155mt and improve the company’s margin by $200-250mn per annum.
In Q1 2020, the total contained copper at the mine was 98,651mt, which was significantly higher compared to 67,616mt in Q1 2019, and 92,821mt in Q4 2019. At the Kamoto concentrator, the total contained copper in concentrate and oxide feed in Q1 2020 was 77,603mt, which was higher than 69,818mt in Q1 2019, and 74,024mt in Q4 2019. This increase at the concentrator was due to higher comparable open pit copper feed grade.
At the Lailu metallurgical plant, copper cathode production in Q1 2020 increased to 67,298mt from 57,175mt in Q1 2019, and to 65,402mt in Q4 2019. This increase has been attributed to higher feed grades at the Lailu metallurgical plant that operates roasters, leaching circuits, and electrolytic cells for copper production.
KCC is assessing the risks of COVID-19 and following containment protocols, the company said in its earnings report. While it has not restricted operations because of the pandemic, it said it is prepared for uncertainty ahead.