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Alba Iulia
Wednesday, November 25, 2020

First Quantum eyes operations expansion at Kansanshi mine

Economy First Quantum eyes operations expansion at Kansanshi mine

First Quantum Minerals Ltd has announced that it plans to expand operations at the Kansanshi mine.

In a technical report, the company said it plans to expand the sulphide ore processing facility at the Kansanshi mine by 25 million tonnes per annum (mtpa), which will boost annual throughout to 52 mtpa.

First Quantum expects to spend nearly $650 million for the expansion in about two years, starting in the second half of 2023.

This expansion plan will continue to be further refined before project approval is sought, the company added.

The mine expansion had been previously approved and commenced but activities were halted in 2013 as a result of market conditions and a challenging fiscal environment.

The earthworks, foundations, steelworks and the filtration facilities (currently operational) for the S3 Expansion were completed prior to the cessation of activities.

“Once internal approvals are granted, construction could potentially re-commence in 2023 with completion by late 2024. An estimated $408M of capital would be required for this construction, inclusive of $25M for upgrades and enhancements to existing processing facilities. The current scenario has the majority of spending occurring between the second half of 2023 and early 2025. The timing of the S3 Expansion could be advanced or delayed depending on capital availability, commodity prices and the Zambian fiscal regime,” the company said.

“The total capital required for the S3 expansion project is expected to be approximately $650M, to be spent over approximately two years starting in the second half of 2023. This expansion plan will continue to be further refined before project approval is sought which is expected within the new two years.”

It added, “In addition to the processing plant expansion and upgrades, the Kansanshi smelter will be increased to 1.65 Mtpa capacity during 2022/23, an increase from current performance level of 1.38 Mtpa. Rather than constructing the originally proposed second smelter, the capacity increase will be achieved partly through enhancing copper concentrate grades by lowering the carbon and pyrite content of the Kansanshi and Sentinel concentrate feeds.”

“Concentrate processing capacity will be further expanded through modifications to the existing high pressure leach (HPL) circuit. These expansion measures are sufficient to accommodate the majority of the increased concentrate production from both Kansanshi and Sentinel, with some excess concentrate to be marketed to other Zambian smelters. An estimated $80M is expected to be spent on the smelter expansion and an additional $15M, on the concentrate cleaning and HPL plant modifications.”

6 COMMENTS

  1. All that is just a song for ordinary citizens as the copper,gold,cobalt leave the Zambian ground with nothing to show for the common citizen. This a mine that owes Zambian people,case was taken to court but PF leaders have done “chinfundawila”!

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  2. Reading between the lines, the project is strategically delayed due to uncertainties in the years 2020, 2021 and 2022 when the Kwacha will be K1,000 to a USD. If ba Piyef were focussed on the Economy and a stable bunch, this investment would have come much earlier to rescue our Economy! Alas, their only message for 2021 is HH! Now that HH is gaining ground, they are having sleepless nights and are not doing much to stabilize the Kwacha which will backfire badly on them. What a shame!

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  3. Reading between the lines, the project is strategically delayed due to uncertainties in the years 2020, 2021 and 2022 when the Kwacha will be K1,000 to a USD. If ba Piyef were focussed on the Economy and a stable bunch, this investment would have come much earlier to rescue our Economy! Alas, their only message for 2021 is HH! Now that HH is gaining ground, they are having sleepless nights and are not doing much to stabilize the Kwacha which will backfire badly on them. What a shame!!

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  4. IT WOULD BE MORE INFORMATIVE FOR THE GENERAL POPULACE IF HOW MANY MILLIONS OF DOLLARS WOULD ACCRUE TO GOVERNMENT IN THE FORM OF TAXES OR HOW MUCH THE LOCAL ECONOMY WOULD BENEFIT.
    MORE IMPORTANTLY HOW THE KWACHA WOULD BE STRENGTHENED IF AT ALL. WE EASILY FORGET THAT THE SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT FUNCTION OF OUR MINES, APART FROM CREATING EMPLOYMENT, IS THE GENERATION OF FOREX. THE TRAGEDY IS THAT THE MINES HAVE 100 % RETENTION OF THE FOREX. THIS IS A LEGACY OF THE POORLY NEGOTIATED PRIVATIZATION AGREEMENTS WHICH BY THE WAY REMAIN SECRET, AND FOR WHOSE BENEFIT YOU MAY WONDER.
    THIS IS WHAT SHOULD BE CHANGED THROUGH AN ECONOMIC AGENDA FOR ZAMBIA. ALL POLITICAL PARTIES SHOULD TAKE PART IN THE EXERCISE WITHOUT PETTY SQUABBLING.

  5. IT WOULD BE MORE INFORMATIVE FOR THE GENERAL POPULACE IF HOW MANY MILLIONS OF DOLLARS WOULD ACCRUE TO GOVERNMENT IN THE FORM OF TAXES OR HOW MUCH THE LOCAL ECONOMY WOULD BENEFIT.
    MORE IMPORTANTLY HOW THE KWACHA WOULD BE STRENGTHENED IF AT ALL. WE EASILY FORGET THAT THE SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT FUNCTION OF OUR MINES, APART FROM CREATING EMPLOYMENT, IS THE GENERATION OF FOREX. THE TRAGEDY IS THAT THE MINES HAVE 100 % RETENTION OF THE FOREX. THIS IS A LEGACY OF THE POORLY NEGOTIATED PRIVATIZATION AGREEMENTS WHICH BY THE WAY REMAIN SECRET, AND FOR WHOSE BENEFIT YOU MAY WONDER.
    THIS IS WHAT SHOULD BE CHANGED THROUGH AN ECONOMIC AGENDA FOR ZAMBIA. ALL POLITICAL PARTIES SHOULD TAKE PART IN THE EXERCISE WITHOUT PETTY SQUABBLING!!

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