Ian Rozier, president and CEO of Eastern Platinum Limited (Eastplats) reported that production from its Crocodile River mine in South Africa was 30,755 PGM ounces for the third quarter of 2008, an increase of 1.5% compared to the previous quarter.
Tonnage processed decreased slightly as a result of a planned reduction of the treatment of low grade tailings as the current tailings retreatment area was depleted. Planning is in progress to optimise the further treatment of tailings on the existing dam.
Two significant concentrator upgrades were completed during the second quarter that resulted in a negative impact on recoveries during that quarter. Recoveries have now returned to near previously achieved levels. Also, the second quarter integration of the chrome recovery plant into the floatation circuit was brought to account resulting in an 83% increase in chromite production from 35,903 tonnes in the second quarter to 65,536 tonnes in the third quarter.
At the Crocette section of Crocodile River, underground development has reached the UG2 ore body in both declines. “We have been able to continue our production build-up at Crocodile River while continuing the process plant upgrading,” Rozier says.
The company expects its production for this year to be about 120,000 PGM ounces.
“We remain very optimistic about the mid and long term prospects for PGMs and for the company,” Rozier says.