R2.5bn SA mineral processing plant ready by 2013

Posted On Friday, 08 October 2010 02:00 Published by eProp Commercial Property News
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A R2.5bn mine dump processing plant is set to come on stream in 2013 in North West Province and Mpumalanga.

Property-Housing-ResidentialThe new plant would generate in excess of 400 jobs and produce 500,000 tons of pure metal, known as 'Pig Iron', which is consumed in steel production, according to SA Metals

Equity, the group behind the project.

It would use state of the art technology to recover residual iron ore from mine dumps in the presence of impurities that would have otherwise made the dumps technically unprocessable.

The group said it had secured dumps with more than enough supply for more than 20 years.

The project will be developed in conjunction with JSE listed commodities trader Metmar Singapore based Global R3 Pte, a specialist in metals recovery in waste stockpiles, V-Projects, and global mining technology licensing company, Outotec Ausmelt.

On Thursday the NEF announced R10 million in venture capital funding into SA Metals Equity, to enable the conclusion of a Bankable Feasibility Study (BFS).

The NEF said that it would look to raise an additional $200-$300 million in venture capital for the project with partners being sought offshore. The NEF has appointed Merrill Lynch to act as its advisor.

To date R25 million has been spent on pre-feasibility studies aimed at testing the technology capability on the selected iron ore bearing mine dumps.

In terms of a mineral reserve base South Africa ranks 9th in the world with an estimated 1.5 billion iron ore reserves.

Due to the technology capability, this project increases South Africa's iron ore reserves without opening up new mines, the NEF said.

The plant is expected to be commissioned in 2013 and will process approximately 1.1 million tons of material from the mine dumps to produce 500,000 tons of Pig Iron per annum coupled with Vanadium and sufficient steam to generate 60 MW equivalent electricity power while only consuming 25 MW, according to SA Metals Equity.

"A project of this magnitude is ground-breaking and offers the project an opportunity to be at the forefront of cutting-edge mining innovation with strong BB-BEE participation right at an early stage", said head of strategic projects fund at the NEF, Donovan Chimhandamba.

"We are very excited by this project not only because of its strong commercial merit but also its high developmental impact and environmental cleaning aspect.

"The project will generate in excess of 400 jobs and attract the much needed foreign direct investment of about US$200-300 million into South Africa and our investment will secure equity into the project which shall be warehoused for BB-BEE beneficiaries", said Chimhandamba.

"More importantly, this project will be a leader in terms of environmental cleaning as it uses material from waste dumps that are of huge environmental concerns created by the historical mining activities.

"Most of these dumps have been identified as potential risks as they carry environmentally invasive chemicals and our project in partnership or guided by the Department of Environmental Affairs will offer a long term overall and sustainable environmental plan," he said.

Last modified on Monday, 19 May 2014 09:08

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