South Africa – Wescoal, the junior coal miner and supplier, has been granted a water use licence for its Elandspruit mine and will commence with project execution imminently according to acting CEO Waheed Sulaiman.
The fast–tracking of this project will be enhanced with the aid of a R200-million funding facility from Investec Bank, though its Corporate and Institutional Banking Division.
“It is a benchmark in the group’s development, as Elandspruit will become our flagship mine doubling our annual coal output from 2Mt to 4Mt by 2016 with a 12-to-15-year lifespan,” Sulaiman says.
“In anticipation of acquiring the licence we have ensured that everything is in place for us to go into production as safely and quickly as possible. The Muhanga coal processing plant which we purchased for R40-million is just 18kms from the mine and has been processing since November 2014 using excess run-of-mine (ROM) in the market to supply the existing customer base. It will now process the Elandspruit ROM as planned.”
Sulaiman points out that during the regulatory approvals process the water use license became the focus of attention receiving considerable publicity, and thanks the regulatory authorities for assisting and bringing its application to finalisation.
“The commencement of production at Elandspruit, having obtained the water use licence, moves us closer to our vision of positioning Wescoal as a leading coal miner. The acquisitions, extensions to the life of operations and empowerment initiatives during the past year all contribute to this objective,” Sulaiman concludes.