Yaounde, Cameroon — MININGREVIEW.COM — 20 April 2009 – Geovic Mining Corporation – a Toronto-listed company that aims to be the world’s largest cobalt mining company – is determined to press ahead with its massive cobalt-nickel-manganese project in Cameroon, despite delays linked to the global financial crisis.
The company owns 60% of Geovic Cameroon, which was granted a mining permit in 2003 for Nkamouna – one of the world’s largest primary cobalt-nickel-manganese deposits.
“The crisis has adversely affected mining projects around the world, but we came here to assure the prime minister of our determination to proceed with our project in Cameroon,” company CEO John Sherborne told reporters here.
After a meeting with Cameroon prime minister Ephraim Inoni, Sherborne commented: “Frankly, a lot of mining projects in the world have been slowed down almost completely now, and we thought it was important to assure the prime minister that this is not the case with us.”
The project – seen by the central African country as a key element in its bid to develop the mining industry – is dependent on financing from United States banks, which are increasingly reluctant to lend money as the international financial crisis deepens.
Construction was due to begin this year with mining starting in 2010, but Geovic Cameroon told Reuters last month that the project would be delayed by at least a year. The company expects to produce 4 200 tonnes of cobalt and 2 100 tonnes of nickel annually for at least 21 years from the deposits, which it estimates at 52 million tonnes of ore.