Lusaka, Zambia — MININGREVIEW.COM — 26 June 2009 – British company Enya Holdings BV is to operate Zambia’s largest cobalt producer Chambishi Metals Plc, which was shut down in December last year.
Chambishi Metals Plc was part of the Luanshya Copper Mines (LCM), which also operated the Baluba copper mine. Enya is a majority shareholder in LCM.
Before shutting down, Chambishi had planned to spend US$354 million (R2.9 billion) to develop the Mulyashi copper project, which was forecast to produce 60 000 tonnes of copper cathode by 2010. It had also planned to raise cobalt output to 5 000 tonnes in 2008 from about 3 000 tonnes in 2007, before halting operations because of the global economic crisis.
“It is the Enya Holdings Group that will operate Chambishi Metals. They will be importing the raw materials (copper concentrate) from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to produce cobalt,” mines minister Maxwell Mwale told Reuters in response to a question about which investor would be handed Chambishi Metals Plc.
Enya Holdings, had interests in both the Bein Stein Group Resources (BSRG) and International Minerals Resources (IRM), the joint owners of LCM before it stopped production.
Mwale said the government and Enya Holdings would soon conclude a deal for operating Chambishi Metals.
Two weeks ago, China’s Non-ferrous Metals Corporation was awarded the right to run the Luanshya copper mines, and pledged to invest US$400 million (R3.2 billion) to revamp its operations.