PANAMA – Inmet Mining of Toronto has received approval from the Autoridad Nacional del Ambiente (ANAM), an arm of the Panamanian government, for its Cobre Panama copper project. Approval of the environmental and social impact assessment includes the mine, mill, surface infrastructure, a port facility and a coal-fired power plant.
Cobre Panama is a large open pit development project 120 km west of Panama City and 20 km from the Caribbean Coast. The deposit contains measured and indicated resources totaling 3.27 billion tonnes at grades of 0.36% Cu, 0.06 g/t Au, 1.3 g/t Ag and 0.007% Mo. The mine will be a truck and shovel operation in several pits to feed a conventional concentrator with a capacity of 150,000 tonnes of ore per day. At year 10, mill capacity will be boosted to 225,000 t/d as head grades are anticipated to fall. Total pre-production capital costs are estimated to be US$4.32 billion ($510 million for mining, $799 million for the concentrator, $597 for site and services, and $320 million for the port facilities plus indirect costs and contingency). Production is to begin in 2016 and continue for roughly 30 years.
Inmet is the 100% owner of the mine, but a joint venture between Korea Resources and LS-Nikko Copper has until Jan. 12, 2012, to notify Inmet of its intention to take up a 20% interest in Cobre Panama.
See also the Inmet website at www.InmetMining.com.