Discovery Metals has started the commissioning of the concentrator at its Boseto Copper mine near Maun with the milling, flotation and production of copper-silver concentrate expected sometime later this month.
In an update, the BSE listed outfit said the project remains within budget in respect of the capital costs.
The Boseto Copper Project is designed to produce an average of 36,000 tonnes Cu and 1.1 million ounces Ag per annum in concentrate from 3Mtpa of ore feed.
“Commissioning has commenced within the timeline communicated to shareholders in 2010,” Discovery Metals’ Managing Director, Brad Sampson said.
“We are now focused on bringing the plant to design production rate/recovery as quickly as possible,” Sampson added.
The Boseto mining license was granted late 2010, which paved way for the construction of the concentrator and the development of the mine with construction commencing in January 2011.
“Given that the company was only awarded the Boseto Mining Licence in December 2010, the efforts of all involved to construct this project within 18 months deserve to be recognised.”
Key aspects of the Development Plan for the Boseto Copper Project have been updated following a visit by the Board to the Project in May 2012.
Discovery Metals’ current expectations regarding Boseto’s open pit unit mining costs are that costs will be higher than the $1.35/t presented in the BFS (in Q3/2010) due to increases in diesel and explosives, in particular, during the past two years, with rises being similar in terms of percentage increase to what has occurred at other African mines in the two year period.
“Unlike many other mines, however, the Company anticipates being able to offset higher mining costs by open pit re-scheduling for lower strip ratios and better grades, which are expected to be available from exploration success since the BFS was published.”
Boseto is a long life mine with an initial evaluated mine life of 15 years. This delivered a project Internal Rate of Return (IRR of 32 percent at US$3 per pound for copper and US$17 per ounce for silver) and Discovery Metals is currently developing a plan to increase the life of the mine to 25 years and increase copper production from 36,000 to 50,000 tonnes per annum.