Mabiza Resources and its major investor, Consolidated Nickel Mines Ltd (CNM), have announced he resumption of mining operations at the Munali Nickel Mine, located in Southern Zambia. CNN is a privately-owned mining and development company that invests in African base metals projects.
The refurbished mine was officially on 16 April by Edgar Lungu, President of Zambia ,at a ceremony attended by key dignitaries from Government, including the Minister of Mines, Richard Musukwa, and the Minister of Health, Dr Chitalu Chilufya.
The newly reopened Munali Nickel Mine.
Since CNM became the new operator of Munali in 2014, the experienced team has invested over U$50 million to restart the mine. CNM has undertaken a complete reassessment of the project. All key technical aspects have been reviewed and re-engineered, from re-interpreting the orebody and changing the mining method to revising the metallurgical process with the introduction of Dense Media Separation (DMS) technology and differential flotation.
Munali comprises an underground mining operation extracting nickel sulphide ore, DMS technology and a standard flotation circuit to produce a 10-12 % nickel concentrate. The mine expects to ramp up production to steady-state levels of 60 000 t/a by Q4-2019. The mine is managed by an all-Zambian management team and currently has a workforce of 380 people, of whom 10 % are women.
“It is with great pride that we celebrate the official opening of Zambia’s newest nickel mine, the Munali Nickel Mine. Today marks a new beginning for the mine with a bright future ahead, backed by an experienced investor, Consolidated Nickel Mines,” said Matthew Banda, General Manager of Munali and Mabiza Resources, at the opening. “We are committed to being a responsible miner and ensuring the socio-economic benefits created by the mine are lasting and shared with our local communities and host government.”
Simon Purkiss, CEO of CNM, said: “Today is the culmination of nearly four years of hard work by the team and has involved a full reassessment of the project to de-risk it both technically and economically. I’d like to thank all the stakeholders involved – our employees and contractors, local communities, business partners, regulatory authorities and Government – who have contributed to our plan to re-start operations at the Munali Nickel Mine. This is a tremendous accomplishment.”