Wednesday, November 29, 2023

No coal mine in Takatokwane

Those who may be thinking of going to Takatokwane to get a job at a new coal mine there would do well to unpack their travel bags and pray that two prospecting companies actually find that coal worth mining. It would appear that not enough information about this prospecting work is being shared even with people who ought to know about it. This past Thursday, Takatokwane MP, Ngaka Ngaka asked the Minister of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources, Nonofo Molefi, “to update the honourable House on the Takatokwane coal mine.” It turns out though that there is no such mine in the area: “Madam Speaker, there is no coal mine in Takatokwane yet, as companies involved in the area are still prospecting. The Takatokwane coal deposit is being prospected by Triprop Ltd (PLs 157 and 160/2009) and the Wizard Investment (PL 035/2007). The viability of opening a mine in Takatokwane coal deposit will be informed by feasibility studies proposed in the current work programmes for the two prospecting companies.”
The Takatokwane thermal coal project is richer than Mmamabula. Based on its 12-million-tonne-a-year output, the project is currently estimated to have a net present value of US$850-million and an internal rate of return of 14 percent.
PL 035/2007 (Takatokwane) consists of 500 kilometre square land holding and is owned 100 percent by Wizard Investments. Walkabout Resources has earned 70 percent of Wizard Investments through its work on the ground to date. PL 157/2009 and PL 160/2009 (Takatokwane South) is owned by Triprop Energy. Walkabout Resources has a 40 percent interest and is earning 65 percent of Triprop Energy. At the Takatokwane South, Walkabout Resources has defined an inferred resource of 2.65 billion tonnes and an indicated resource of 533 million tonnes of thermal grade coal within an overall combined inferred resource at Takatokwane of 6.88 billion tonnes, making it Botswana’s largest coal resource. This coal is suitable for upgrade to an export quality product. In January this year, Walkabout Resources announced the results of a scoping study into the project. It is estimated that the mine would cost US$767 million to develop.


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