Johannesburg, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 08 January 2010 – South African-based and JSE-listed Metorex Limited “’ a mid-tier mining group well-known as a base metal operator in Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) “’ has risen to its highest level in almost 14 months in Johannesburg trading, as lower debt and higher copper prices improved the company’s earnings outlook.
Bloomberg News reports that Metorex climbed 20 cents, or 4%, to R5.25 “’ its highest level since 11 November 2008. The stock was the second best performer on the all share index last year after Northam Platinum Limited. Copper prices more than doubled last year, and climbed as much as 4.1%over the past two days.
“The copper price has been screaming higher and that has helped boost the company’s earnings outlook,” said David Shapiro, who heads Sasfin Holdings Limited’s securities unit in Johannesburg. “Also, Metorex has restructured its finances and hedge book and production is improving.”
Metorex CEO Terence Goodlace told Miningreview.com he was satisfied with attempts to restructure debt taken on to develop the Ruashi mine. Ruashi has suffered from higher-than-projected investment costs, resulting in the need to raise extra funds and delay output.
He said copper production from the mine would reach 36 000 tpa and cobalt between 4 000 and 5 000 tpa. “Our processing through the plant will be at a rate of around 120 000 tpm, or 1.44 Mtpa. We expect to reach those levels in 2010,” Goodlace confirmed.
“I think Terence Goodlace has done a great job after the near meltdown of the company due to strangling debt and excessive acquisitions,” said Bruce Main “’ a Johannesburg-based fund manager at Ivy Asset Management.