Zimplats’ Bimha mine in April reached its design capacity of 2,2 metric tonnes per annum, producing 31% of the total tonnage mined in Q4 2018.
As at June 30 2018, Bimha’s performance at 31% was 2% above budget.
In November 2014, the group embarked on the redevelopment of Bimha Mine following its partial collapse.
Since then, the mine has produced 349 717 tonnes in the year-ended June 30 2015, 442 292 tonnes in FY2016 and 919 416 tonnes in FY2017.
The mine is expected to contribute consistently to the country’s export earnings.
Zimplats CE Alex Mhembere told businessdigest last week that now that the mine has reached its design capacity of 2,2 metric tonnes per annum in FY2018, he was confident that it will contribute significantly to ore mined going forward.
“As at 30 June 2018, the end of our fourth quarter, Bimha produced 31% of the total tonnage mined in the quarter and performed at 2% above budget. The group is satisfied with Bimha’s performance as it has met its milestone of achieving design capacity by the end of April 2018. The successful redevelopment of Zimplats’ Bimha Mine is important in delivering the 6,2 million tonnes per annum nameplate ore capacity,” he said.
While Bimha has achieved full design capacity, additional work on infrastructure installation is ongoing and is expected to enhance the production efficiencies.
The redevelopment process has been crucial for the business to ensure it maintains its ability to produce 270 000 ounces of platinum per annum.
As of June 30 2018, a total of US$66,2 million had been spent on the redevelopment project and US$14,4 million committed as at June 30 2018 against an approved total project budget of US$101 million.
“The north crusher and ore conveyancing system is targeted for completion in August 2018 while the south crusher and ore conveyancing system is scheduled for commissioning in May 2019. We are glad to report that 65% of the work at Bimha Mine has relied on local suppliers,” he said.
Zimplats is currently operating at its full name-plate design capacity (6,2 million tonnes per annum), producing in excess of 500 000 ounces PGM (4E) per annum, with associated base metals (copper and nickel), plus other associated minor metals that are part of the full array of the metals we produce (10 in total).
Meanwhile, he said the development of a new 2,2 million tonnes per annum mine (Mupani) is progressing well with ore contact expected by May 2020 and full production from August 2025.
The mine is being developed to replace Rukodzi and Ngwarati mines, which will be depleted in FY2022 and FY2025 respectively.