Zambia – The First Quantum Minerals updated NI 43-101 technical report for its Kansanshi mine has confirmed its long-term future with an 840 Mt measured and indicated mineral resource at 0.72% total copper.
The company believes there is still considerable upside potential through the Kansanshi’s inferred resource of 669 Mt at 0.6% total copper (TCu).
Kansanshi’s proven and probable mineral reserves are confirmed at 668 Mt @ 0.7% TCu, excluding stockpiles. On-going grade control and delineation drilling are expected to increase reserves through the upgrading of inferred material.
The mine’s operating history has shown that the inferred resource has consistently made a positive contribution to ore feed. Historically, conversion of inferred material into the measured and indicated categories has been up to 80% in certain areas.
Given this track record, Kansanshi’s internal planning considers inferred resource to ensure practical and efficient outcomes are identified, and this is routinely used in the mine’s planning and forecasting.
The planning process at Kansanshi is on-going and opportunities for improving the short-term copper and gold production are currently being identified. In addition, certain regions of the plan contain inferred material which, as history shows, could be converted as operations progress and have an impact on ore feed and production.
For these reasons, the projected production of copper and gold shown in the production schedule within the technical report are conservative and serve only to satisfy the requirements of 43-101. They are not intended as guidance.
The mine’s focus on cost reduction and operational efficiency enhancements, particularly recoveries, continues and this in turn could have an impact on operating margins and production.
The impact on the Kansanshi mine of sulphuric acid produced by the company’s copper smelter, currently under commissioning has been conservatively applied to the operating scenario reflected in the technical report.