The twin-shaft
system at Northam.
 
Johannesburg, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 18 June 2010

Platinum producer Northam Platinum has revealed that its capital expenditure estimate for its flagship Booysendal project has increased to R3.6 billion. Original estimates put the cost of the project at almost R3.1billion.

In a statement issued here, the company said this reflected the effects of inflationary increases on the one hand, and on the other, the firmer estimates for a larger operation.

Northam’s 100% owned Booysendal asset lies on the eastern limb of the Bushveld Complex, and contains a resource of more than 100 million ounces (3PGM+Au).

The new capital expenditure estimates come out of an optimisation exercise on the Booysendal feasibility study, which was released to the market in the fourth quarter of the 2009 calendar year.

On surface, the concentrator plant layout has been optimised to take account of the higher run of mine (ROM) production, resulting in a more efficient process flow and a smaller environmental footprint.

“The value engineering process has been a more than useful exercise, with results yielding an enhanced return on a more robust project than we had initially envisaged,” said Northam chief executive Glyn Lewis.

Following board approval, preparatory work is proceeding on creating access and other infrastructural installations at Booysendal.