African Copper Plc: Operational Update
Tuesday, May 4th, 2010
African Copper Plc, the AIM-listed copper producer and exploration company, currently focused on Botswana is pleased to announce an operational update on its flagship copper producing Mowana Mine.
As previously reported, ACU had decided to purchase mobile crushing units in order to bypass the Secondary and Tertiary Crushing Plant which had been hindered by equipment breakdown and adverse weather conditions. The Company can now announce that these units have been purchased and commissioned, and are now being brought up to full capacity. , Engineering consultants engaged in April have commenced the study for the redesign of the Secondary and Tertiary Plant.
In addition, the Company is finalising specifications of the wet tailings facility with the consulting engineers. The Environmental Management Plan for wet tailings disposal was submitted to the Botswana Government’s Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) in April 2010 and approval is expected in May 2010. The Company has also selected the Dense Media Separation (“DMS”) plant to be installed and is seeking final board approval in May 2010. The DMS plant provides a pre-concentration of copper prior to milling and flotation and is expected to have the effect of allowing mining to a lower cut-off, processing of higher grade material through the concentrator and an overall increase in the contained metal output from the Mowana mine.
Further to previous announcements, the Company has now commenced deep exploration drilling in and around the Mowana mine and significant progress has also been made to bring Thakadu, the Company’s nearby copper-silver deposit, into operation. The Thakadu exploration programme has been reviewed by the DEA and a final Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) will be submitted in early May 2010 with approval expected later in the month. A Project Manager was appointed at the start of March 2010 and contract mining tenders are being conducted prior to the granting of the mining licence which is now also expected in May 2010.
Commenting, Jordan Soko, Executive Director of African Copper Plc, said, “We are pleased with the installation of the mobile crushers. The crushers are a key part of our programme of enhancements at our Mowana Mine. We believe that all these actions will significantly improve copper production at what is a high quality asset.”