Harare - Mimosa Platinum Mine, jointly owned by Impala Platinum Holdings [JSE:IMP]
and Aquarius Platinum [JSE:AQP]
, expects an annualised production of 204 000 ounces in the current financial year, 100 000 oz of which are expected to be platinum.
MD Winston Chitando told a media tour on Friday that there will be a slight uptick for 2013 and “a slight increase in the ounces that are sold”.
Chitando said pressure of the cost curve continues to affect operations just like everywhere else.
However, he could not give figures on the cash cost per ounce as these would be contained in the group’s third-quarter results.
Chitando said the mine has been doing feasibility studies over the last two years and would continue to pursue various expansion options.
Chitando said shareholders are committed to indigenisation and there has been progress in negotiations with the indigenisation ministry.
In terms of procurement, "reputable" local suppliers make up about 30% of approved suppliers.
In the last financial period, local payments amounted to $254m.
Giving the breakdown, Chitando said $24m was paid to local authorities, $105m was paid out to local supplies of which $81m was for indigenous suppliers, while the remaining $125m was paid out to government in royalties and other taxes.
Chitando said that operations were heavily mechanised both underground and surface at the processing plant.
During the tour of the plant, a mine official said that 7 400 t of ore are processed daily on a 24-hour shift. The ore is dropped from the underground shaft at around 400 mm and reduced to powder for processing.
The official said 97% of what would have been mined is waste and only 3% contains minerals. The finished concentrate once processed contains mostly nickel, but still has the other group metals.
In terms of its community and social responsibility, the mine is in the process of building its employees 1 500 homes under a housing ownership scheme. The mine has slightly over 1 800 employees.
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