Sandfire Resources, an Australian mining company, has officially marked the commencement of operations at its Motheo copper mine situated in Botswana.
Situated approximately 70 km northeast of Ghanzi, the mine’s construction received approval from the company’s board in December 2020.
The inaugural batch of copper concentrate was successfully produced in May of this year. Foreseeing a rapid escalation in throughput, Sandfire anticipates reaching the initial processing rate of 3.2 tonnes per annum (tpa) in the near future.
The company reported that the mine has already achieved its nameplate capacities across multiple shifts, achieving copper recovery rates of around 90%.
Sandfire is also actively pursuing a swift and cost-effective expansion to 5.2 tpa at the Motheo site, with the first shipment projected to take place this month.
This development is poised to result in an annualized increase in contained copper production exceeding 50,000 tons by the fiscal year 2025.
Brendan Harris, the Managing Director and CEO of Sandfire, stated: “The official unveiling of the Motheo copper mine cements our strategic position within the highly promising Kalahari Copper Belt. As we intensify our exploration efforts on targets in close proximity to the mine, we discern substantial potential for extending Motheo’s operational life, thereby contributing to the local economy for generations to come.”
Nestled within the Kalahari Copper Belt, the Motheo copper mine stands as a significant asset. It is founded upon the open-pit development of the T3 deposit, a substantial sediment-hosted copper and silver reservoir nestled within the region’s copper belt.
Anticipated to be operational for an initial span of ten years, the Motheo mine is projected to generate “favorable returns” for its stakeholders, simultaneously delivering substantial value to the country through tax revenue, royalties, and job opportunities.
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