Johannesburg, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 19 September 2008 – South Africa – which has Africa’s biggest uranium reserves – does not need to restrict future exports of the nuclear fuel in order to ensure sufficient supply for the country‘s own power plants.
Bloomberg News quotes Bob Tait – vice president of investor relations at Canadian mining company First Uranium Limited – as saying that South Africa’s state-owned power utility Eskom Holdings Limited will need about 10 million pounds of uranium a year by 2025. Speaking at the company’s Ezulweni mine, he added that Southern African supply would probably be at about 14 million pounds by that time.
There’s no need to restrict exports,” Tait insisted, “there’s plenty of supply.”
Eskom operates one nuclear power plant – the 1 800-megawatt Koeberg plant near Cape Town. It plans to raise nuclear capacity to 20 000 megawatts by 2025.
First Uranium CEO Gordon Miller agreed that South Africa was unlikely to curb exports. In an interview with Bloomberg News he predicted that Southern Africa could supply as much as 28 million pounds of uranium by 2013, with First Uranium accounting for about 2.72 million.
This estimate also included production from Rio Tinto Plc, AngloGold Ashanti Ltd., Paladin Energy Ltd., Uranium One Inc. and Uramin Inc operations in South Africa, Namibia and Malawi.