First Quantam makes $2.4 billion in Zambian mine, smelter project
First Quantam's new Sentinel copper mine and smelter project could cost over $2.4 billion to develop, chairperson and chief executive Philip Pascall said on March 26. Mining Weekly reported that the Zambia-based operation may develop into a facility that has a production capacity of up to 300,000 tons of copper on an annual basis.
According to the news outlet, an independent study conducted by mine consultants confirmed the plans for the site, and the mine life has been estimated at more than 15 years.
"Our strategy is to develop this facility over a two-year timeframe at the same time as a new copper smelter in Zambia that would process all Sentinel's concentrate production, eliminating the need to export concentrate to offshore smelters," Pascall said in a statement.
The operation may grow more than expected after several years, as several potential drilling projects and exploration efforts could lead to production levels that could exceed the initial estimations.
Pascall noted that commercial negotiations were underway regarding the development of the Sentinel mine, which is part of the subsidiary firm Kalumbila Minerals.
According to Mining Weekly, the total mineral resource estimate was reported to be 165.6-million tons at 0.42 percent copper.
A company release noted that Pascall outlined the creation of 2,400 jobs that would be created because of the project and a potential infrastructure development program to support the mineral production. The capital investment of $2.4 billion was highlighted by the company's chief executive.