Interview with Matt Pascall, First Quantum Minerals, Director Operations, on updates from Kansanshi and some of the current challenges of operating from Zambia.

Matt Pascal,FQM, Director Operations

Matt Pascal,First Quantum Minerals, Director Operations

Following the decline in the price of copper, what strategies is First Quantum employing at Kansanshi to ensure profitability?

First Quantum has to remain efficient at Kansanshi. Currently, Kansanshi operates in the lower 40-50 cost percentile. This means that, should the price of copper drop, most of the copper operations worldwide would start feeling severe pressure before Kansanshi does.Continue Reading

Interview with Zakir Manji on Fuchs Oil Congo Sarl products and solutions for the local mining industry and the company’s expectations in the DRC.

Zakir Manji Managing Director Fuchs Oil Congo

Zakir Manji Managing Director Fuchs Oil Congo

The Fuchs Group is the world’s largest independent manufacture of lubricants starting back in 1931. What have been the main milestones in operations of the company in the DRC?

The Fuchs Group is acknowledged as the world’s largest independent lubricants manufacturer, supplying quality lubricants from several state-of-the-art ISO accredited plants worldwide. In the DRC, Fuchs Congo is the only accredited representative of the Fuchs brand. We entered the country in 2011 with the aim of providing customised services and solutions for our clients’ needs and requirements.

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Interview with Rene Monzambe, Senior Executive Head Region, on the major trends in DRC’s telecom industry.

Rene Monzambe Head of Katanga Region Vodacom

Rene Monzambe Head of Katanga Region Vodacom

When Vodacom began operations in the DRC in 2002, you estimated that there were 100,000 phones for a population of over 60 million. How have these statistics changed throughout the years, and how has Vodacom impacted the market?

When Vodacom entered the DRC in 2002, statistics showed that there were only 100,000 phones for over 60 million people, a telecom penetration rate of less than 1%. Today, 28,231,900 million people are using mobile phones in the DRC bringing the penetration rate to 37.33%. Vodacom has 9,334,379 million customers in the DRC, with the competition being responsible for serving another 19 million people.

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Interview with Ian Greenway and Tracy Bennet on the laboratory’s current expansion plans and on mineral grades encountered in the DRC.

Ian Greenway General Manager Robinsons International

Ian Greenway General Manager Robinsons International

RI Afrique is a member of the Robinson International Group and your laboratory in Lubumbashi allows for testing, amongst others, of metal ores.  Could you provide us with a brief overview of the company in the DRC?
TB: RI Afrique entered the DRC in 2005 and that was when we began offering our initial laboratory services in the country. The core of our business is export certification and analyses for the mining industry and we are dedicated to offering independent, professional and technical service in the field of inspection. In 2012, RI Afrique also began water analysis for environmental audit requirements, as the authorities are becoming more environmentally conscious and are putting pressure on companies to monitor their waters. RI Afrique also recently opened a microbiology facility for basic microbiology testing and is currently the only ISO 17025 accredited laboratory in DRC.Continue Reading

Gecamines plans 46pct copper output growth in 2014 while seeking financing on Deziwa and Ecalle C mining concessions

Bloomberg reported that Democratic Republic of Congo’s state mining company Gecamines plans to boost copper output 46% this year even as it’s still seeking funding for new projects.

Mr Ahmed Kalej Nkand CEO of Gecamines said that “Part of the production may come from a deal with Trafigura Beheer BV, the world’s second largest minerals trader, to process a copper tailings stockpile at Gecamines’ Lupoto mine.”

Mr Nkand said that “There’s still some preparation work on a processing plant. Once we’ve finished that we can start operations producing about a monthly 3,000 tonnes of concentrate over 33 months. Gecamines was once one of the world’s biggest copper miners, shipping 476,000 tonnes in 1986, until years of mismanagement and war in Congo almost destroyed the company. This year it’s set to produce 60,000 tonnes of copper up from 41,000 tonnes a year earlier.”

He said that “It will be a great challenge because of electricity problems and a 300 MW deficit forcing the country to ration supply to mining companies. A plan to build a 500-megawatt coal plant hasn’t yet reached the feasibility study stage, a year and a half after the company first announced the development.

He added that Gecamines is also trying to find financing for its fully owned Deziwa and Ecaille C mining concessions, among Congo’s largest with 4.85 million certified tonnes of copper and 401,900 tonnes of cobalt reserves. It’s a dream concession.

Mining in the Dominican Republic: a mining investment destination in the Caribbean

mining-in-the-dominican-republicSanto Domingo – The Dominican Republic occupies the eastern two thirds of the island of Hispaniola, which it shares with Haiti. The arrival of the Spaniards in 1492, as part of Columbus first expedition to the Americas, marked the beginning of the exploitation of the island’s rich gold and silver reserves. However, these reserves were soon depleted and other goods such as sugar began to shape the Dominican Republic economy until the 1950’s, when large scale exploitation of ferronickel and gold began again, with the opening of the first open pit gold mine in 1975.

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