Zimbabwe’s platinum firms spur South Africa’s platinum output growth

Zimbabwe’s platinum firms spur South Africa’s platinum output growth
Mining News Updateby Zimbabwe Mining Industry Staff Reporter

Strong platinum output flows from Zimbabwean platinum firms are helping to drive production figures for two global platinum producers – Impala Platinum and Anglo – American Platinum on the back of increased milling and release of stockpiled concentrates in the first quarter of 2016.

Strong platinum output flows from Zimbabwean platinum firms are helping to drive production figures for two global platinum producers – Impala Platinum and Anglo – American Platinum on the back of increased milling and release of stockpiled concentrates in the first quarter of 2016.

South Africa’s Impala Platinum posted a 17 percent rise in production in the quarter to the end of March following a 71 percent rise in output at its Zimbabwe based unit Zimplats. In a statement, the company said Zimplats output rose by 71 percent to 89 000 ounces (oz) for the quarter ended March 31 this year up from 52 000oz in the prior comparable period. This provided a fillip on Impala Platinum which sought to stabilize production for the period after a fire disrupted its Rustenburg operation. Implats’output shed 1000 ounces to 142 000 ounces compared to 143 000 ounces in the same period last year. However, the tonnage milled declined to two million tonnes from 2,5 million tonnes the year before at a time when production at Rustenburg is likely to decline this quarter.

The commencement of an open-pit operation at Zimplats has helped to compensate for the loss of production at the Bimha mine, which is being redeveloped because of concerns about the stability of its ground and tunnels. The SA –based platinum giant says it expects to produce 1, 42 million refined platinum ounces compared to 1,276 million ounces last year. Implats output figures also went up thanks to increased output at Mimosa which saw its production figures rising by 8,7 percent to 676 000 tonnes from 622 000 tonnes recorded in the quarter ended 31 March 2015 as additional material was milled from the stockpile.

Platinum in concentrate production for the quarter increased as a result of the increased mill throughput to 28 000 ounces in the quarter ended 31 March 2015. Tonnes milled during the nine-month period ended 31 March 2016 increased 3,3 percent to 1,99 million tonnes, compared to 1,92 million tonnes in the corresponding prior period. The increased throughput resulted in 2,3 percent higher platinum in concentrate production of 90 000 platinum ounces compared to 88 000 platinum ounces in the prior comparable period. “The higher throughput was directly attributable to the measures implemented to recover production loses as a result of the safety closure of the Bimha Mine in August 2014,” reported Implats.

Platinum in matte for the nine months ended March 31, 2016 was 42 percent higher at 220 000oz, compared to 155 000oz in the prior comparable period. Implats has an 87 percent stake in Zimplats, as well as 50-50 joint venture with Aquarius Platinum in another Zimbabwe-based platinum producer, Mimosa Platinum Mine.

Zimplats and Mimosa contributed nearly 120 000 ounces to Implats production figures for the first quarter despite a difficult macro – economic environment in Zimbabwe.ANGLO American Platinum registered a 7% increase in platinum production to 381 000 ounces in the first quarter ended March 31, 2016 due to an increase in output at its three mines including Zimbabwean based Unki.An increase to 357 000 ounce was analysts say the major drawback for the sector has been the indigenization law, which they say was still ‘incoherent and tributed to higher production from Unki, Amandelbult and Mogalakwena mines.

admin
ADMINISTRATOR
PROFILE

Posts Carousel

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Facebook
Facebook
LinkedIn
WhatsApp WhatsApp us