First Quantum to advance S3 expansion at Kansanshi mine in Zambia

Seetao 2022-05-09 17:38
  • Zambia copper-gold mine's S3 expansion project expected to boost its total annual throughput to 53Mtpa
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First Quantum Minerals said its board had approved the $1.25 billion S3 expansion project at the Kansanshi copper-gold mine in Zambia and the $100 million Enterprise nickel project. The company said it had worked with the Zambian government to resolve all points of contention that had hindered progress on the S3 expansion and the corporate nickel project. As part of this, the parties have reached an agreement on the amount of outstanding value-added tax receivable and the manner of repayment of offsetting mining taxes and royalties in the future.

Tristan Pascall, CEO of First Quantum Minerals, said: “The S3 expansion and the corporate nickel project are a key part of our brownfield growth strategy. The Kansanshi mine has been a cornerstone asset of FirstQuantum for 15 years, and the S3 expansion project will expand production and extend the life of the mine. 20 years extension. "Low-cost, high-grade corporate nickel projects well positioned to supply the fast-growing electric vehicle battery industry. The approval of these two projects is an important milestone for the company to achieve the growth of responsible production of metals needed for the global green energy transition. "

The S3 expansion project at the copper-gold mine is underway to convert an existing selective high-grade, medium-scale mining operation into a medium-grade large-scale mining operation. First Quantum Minerals said the planned transition would be more suitable for a higher proportion of primary, lower-grade sulphide ore at depth. When complete, the S3 expansion will consist of a stand-alone processing plant with a capacity of 25 million tonnes per annum (Mtpa) and a larger new mining fleet. The project is expected to increase the total annual throughput of the Kansanshi copper mine to 53Mtpa. First Quantum Minerals expects average copper production at the Kansanshi mine to be close to 250,000 tonnes (Ktpa) with the remaining life of the mine to 2044.

The Canadian miner is restarting detailed engineering work on the S3 expansion project to finalize purchase orders for key long lead projects, including SAG mills, in-pit crushing stations and ball mills. The company will invest $900 million in the processing plant and mine fleet, with the remaining $350 million in pre-stripping at the Southeast Dome mine. Separately, First Quantum Minerals will develop the Enterprise nickel sulphide deposit, located 12km northwest of its Sentinel copper mine. Proved and probable reserves of nickel sulphide deposits are 34.7 million tonnes of ore with a nickel content of 0.99%. Keywords: engineering construction, engineering news

According to First Quantum Minerals, the Enterprise nickel project will have a single main open pit and a south-west extension. It will utilize an existing 4Mtpa nickel circuit built in the past as part of the Sentinel mine's original processing complex. The company expects the mine development project to take nearly 12 months. At full production, the Enterprise Nickel Project is estimated to produce an average of 30Ktpa of high-grade nickel concentrate.Editor/XingWentao