Canadian Mining Journal


COPPER: First Quantum boosts share of Cobre Panama

Building the mineral processing plant at Cobre Panama. (Credit: First Quantum minerals)

PANAMA – First Quantum Minerals of Toronto is boosting its share of the Cobre Panama copper project by increasing its share of the operating company, Minera Panama SA, to 90%.

First Quantum will pay $635 million for the 10% share of Minera Panama held by LS-Nikko Copper. Annual installments will be made to LS-Nikko Copper over five years. First Quantum said it will finance the first installment from proceeds of an additional precious metals stream linked to the 10% interest. Closing is expected by the end of September 2017.

As part of the arrangement, First Quantum will also acquire LS-Nikko Copper’s 50% interest in Korea Panama Mining, a 50:50 joint venture with Korea Resources Corp., which holds a 20% interest in Minera Panama.

The Cobre Panama project is a US$6.5-billion open pit development 120 km west of Panama City and 20 km from the Caribbean cost. Proven and probable reserves at the property are 3.1 billion tonnes averaging 0.38% copper, 0.07 g/t gold, 1.3 g/t silver, and 0.006 molybdenum. The reserves contain 11.8 million tonnes of copper and 7.3 million oz. of gold.

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