Kazakh Kazakhmys to develop new large copper mine

Business Materials 6 December 2012 17:12 (UTC +04:00)
The Board of Kazakh Metallurgical Corporation Kazakhmys has approved development of Aktogay mine

Azerbaijan, Baku, Dec. 6 / Trend E. Kosolapova/

The Board of Kazakh Metallurgical Corporation Kazakhmys has approved development of Aktogay mine, the company reported on Thursday.

"The Board has approved the development of Aktogay, its second major copper project, following the successful completion of the feasibility study," the company said.

According to the company, development of Aktogay will start in early 2013. First production from the oxide deposit will be received in 2015. Development of the sulphide plant will be completed in early 2016 with the first ore being processed at the concentrator.

Average annual output at the Aktogay mine will hit 72,000 ton of copper cathode equivalent during a mine life of over 50 years, although production will average 104,000 tons within the first 10 years.

The project has a capital cost of around $2 billion, and is primarily being funded from a $1.5 billion specific financing facility signed with the China Development Bank in December 2011.

The project has the advantage of existing infrastructure, including power and transportation links. Aktogay has significant similarities to Bozshakol, and the intention is to enhance value by replicating existing design and engineering work at Bozshakol.

Aktogay is a large open-cast mine in south eastern Kazakhstan, approximately 250 km from the Kazakhstan-China border. It is the Group's second major copper project alongside Bozshakol, which was approved in August 2011 and is already in development. The Aktogay ore body consists of an oxide deposit on top of a larger sulphide deposit, the latter containing some valuable molybdenum which will be extracted as a by-product. The deposit has a Mineral Resource of 1,719 million tones, at an average copper grade of 0.33 percent.

Kazakhmys is a leading international natural resources group with significant interests in copper, gold, zinc, silver and power generation. It is the largest copper producer in Kazakhstan and one of the top worldwide with seventeen operating mines, ten concentrators and two copper smelters.