Uzbekistan, Tashkent, Oct. 22 /Trend corr.D.Azizov /
Almalyk Mining-Metallurgical Complex (AMMC, Tashkent region) and German Ausmet (a division of Australian Ausmet Industrial) have signed a contract on the construction of a new furnace at the AMMC copper smelt, the report from the plant stated on Monday.
The contract, costs of which are undisclosed, provides for turnkey design and supply of equipment for the construction of a new automatic copper smelting furnace with a capacity of 17.000 tons of copper per year.
The total project cost is $98.2 million. It will be funded through a loan from the Fund for Reconstruction and Development of Uzbekistan (FRDU) to the sum of $60 million, AMMC equity $25 million and loans from Uzbek banks of $13.2 million. Civil works will be carried out by AMMC units.
The project on the construction of a new furnace at the copper smelt is included in the total programme on the modernisation of copper production through replacement of old capacities and involving new raw materials in processing.
According to the company in June AMMC signed a contract with the German Outotec GmbH on the construction of a new sulphuric acid workshop at the copper smelt.
The project, worth $80.2 million provides for the construction of a new sulphuric acid plant with capacity of 500,000 tons of sulphuric acid per year by middle of 2014.
Almalyk Mining is the only copper producer in Uzbekistan. The complex consists of eight mining companies, five processing factories, two metallurgical plants, sulphuric acid enterprises, mechanical repair and lime plants. The company produces refined copper, zinc, iron, lead concentrate and other products.
Kalmakyr and Sary Cheku copper. porphyry fields (Tashkent region), Uch-Kulach fields of lead, zinc and barite ore (Djizzak region) and Khandiza mine ores (Kashkadarya region) are the resource bases of AMMC.
Last spring, AMMC completed the modernisation of the Sary Ceku mine and proceeded to the second re-equipment stage of the Kalmakyr mine, worth 43.8 million dollars. The project is funded by the AMMC ($14.2 million), loans of FRDU ($22.9 million) and Uzbek Mortgage Bank ($6.5 million).
The first phase of the project worth $ 98.7 million was completed in 2011. The construction of the fourth reloading point, the reconstruction of railways and purchase of additional mining equipment were completed within the first phase. Ore production at the mine increased by 3.5 million tons a year as a result of the redevelopment.
The project is currently financed through a FRDU loan to the sum of $63 million, loans from local commercial banks worth $ 20 million and AMMC equity- $15.7 million.
The completion of the second phase will provide an annual production level of copper ore of 30 million tons.
Currently, the designed capacity of AMMC is 147,000 tons of copper cathodes per year. Around 90 per cent of silver and 20 per cent of gold production in the country falls to the share of AMMC. In 2012, the plant planned to increase copper production up to 96,000 tons, by five per cent compared to 2011.