Uzbekistan, Tashkent, March 5 / Trend D. Azizov /
Open joint-stock company Almalyk Mining and Smelting Enterprise (AMSE, based in the area of Tashkent) will implement a project of reconstruction and increase of capacity of mine Kalmakyr - the enterprise's main raw material base - with a total value of $98.7 million over next 2 years, a source at the enterprise's management reported.
The source continued to say that the enterprise has launched the initial stage of work over reconstruction of the mine and that the project is likely to end by early 2012.
Mine Kalmakyr, which is located at the site of copper-porphyritic cast of the same name, has been developed since 1954. Its designed capacity is 27 million tons of ore and 12 million cubic meters of overburden a year. On January 1, 2007, the mine's geological reserves were 6.15 million tons of copper and 98,400 tons of molybdenum. Another industrial value of mine Kalmakyr, apart from copper, consists of gold, silver, molybdenum, selenium, tellurium and rhenium.
As a result of planned reconstruction, ore production from the mine is expected to increase by 3.5 million tons a year.
The project envisions construction of the fourth overload link and reconstruction of railways, and purchase of supplementary mining equipment, including excavators and drills.
The project will be financed at a $63 million loan to be issued by the Fund for Reconstruction and Development of Uzbekistan (FRDU), $20 million to be issued as a loan by local profit banks, and $15.7 million as AMSE's own assets.
The loan will be used for the purchase of mining and drilling equipment and of equipment for the construction of the fourth overload link and reconstruction of railways. Tenders assuming equipment supply to mine Kalmakyr are likely to be announced at the end of the first quarter of this year.
The Almalyk MSE is the only copper producer in Uzbekistan and is one of the biggest producers of nonferrous metals in Central Asia. The AMSE yields around 90 percent of silver extraction and 20 percent of gold extraction in Uzbekistan. The enterprise incorporates two ore mines, two dressing works and two metallurgic plants with their own infrastructure.
The enterprise is authorized to carry out extractive work at copper-molybdenum and lead-zinc mines in the area of town Almalyk (the Tashkent district). The raw material base of the AMSE comprises copper-porphyritic ore mines Kalmakyr and Sari-Cheku (the Tashkent district) and lead-zinc-barite ore mine Uch-Kulach (the Jizak district).
The enterprise yields produce valued at more than $300 million a year. The enterprise is specialized in production of refined copper (cathodes), metallic zinc, lead concentrate and other produces. The enterprise exports around 60 percent of its output, including 5 percent as export to CIS states.
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