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US$250m injection in new platinum mine

by Staff reporter
02 Oct 2022 at 08:57hrs | Views
Bravura Consortium, which is owned by Nigerian billionaire Mr Benedict Peters, is finalising resource exploration at its claims in Selous, Mashonaland West province, where it is set to invest US$250 million to develop a new platinum mine.

The company started exploration at its concessions in July 2019, but progress was disrupted by Covid-19. Up to 2 000 jobs are expected to be created when production starts.

Speaking to The Sunday Mail at the mining site last week, Bravura country director Mr Lionel Mhlanga said they had begun mobilising equipment to the site.

The box cut, which heralds the beginning of mining excavation, is expected to be opened at the beginning of 2023.

"Since the launch of the project and inception of the drilling programme, 45 000 metres of core samples have been drilled," said Mr Mhlanga.

"The project is now at the final stages of resource confirmation and evaluation, which will culminate in a resource model and resource statement. The resource model will then be an input into the next phase of the project, which is the conceptual and feasibility studies and mine design."

The first phase of the project, which will include the establishment of critical infrastructure, is envisaged to gobble up to US$250 million.

"It is envisioned that the total cost at the completion of Phase 1 of mining — which is access development, mine development, surface infrastructure, staff housing and concentrator development — will be upward of US$250 million," added Mr Mhlanga.

The company has already started mine design and infrastructure identification, which will be completed in the next three months.

"In conjunction with the exploration and resource confirmation exercise, as mentioned, mine design and key infrastructure identification and planning have begun in earnest," he said.

"Long-lead capital items have been ordered and are in the process of being manufactured. Box-cut and decline equipment has been mobilised and close to 80 percent of that equipment is already at the site. All the equipment — exploration rigs, analytical labs, earthmoving and shotcreting equipment — is all 100 percent owned by Bravura."

Platinum is projected to contribute US$3 billion annually to the US$12 billion revenue target set for the mining sector by next year.

Bravura believes it will significantly "contribute to the target when the mine comes into production".

The Government signed an agreement with the consortium in 2019 and the group pledged to spend more than US$50 million to explore and mine platinum.

Mr Peters even travelled to Zimbabwe for the ground-breaking and signing ceremony for concessions in June 2019 and met President Mnangagwa.

Last week, Mines and Mining Development Deputy Minister Polite Kambamura said the Bravura venture shows that the target of achieving a US$12 billion mining sector from next year is taking shape.

"Last year, PGMs (platinum group metals) contributed US$2,4 billion, which is a positive development to the attainment of our target of US$3 billion for platinum. All this feeds into our vision of a US$12 billion mining economy. The continuing progress at Bravura shows that we are on the right track of achieving our target."

Source - The Sunday Mail