Ivanhoe Mines and Congo’s state mining company Gécamines have commenced construction work at the processing plant at the Kipushi underground zinc-copper mine in Haut-Katanga, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
The project is owned by Kipushi Corporation (KICO), a joint venture between Ivanhoe Mines (68%) and state-owned mining company Gécamines (32%).
Production from Kipushi’s ultra-high-grade Big Zinc deposit is targeted for late 2024, marking one hundred years since the mine first opened.
The Kipushi 2022 Feasibility Study evaluates the development of an 800,000-tonne-per-annum concentrator and underground mine, producing on average of 240,000 tonnes per annum of zinc contained in concentrate over a 14-year life of mine.
“The successful commencement of commercial production would establish Kipushi as the world’s highest-grade major zinc mine, with an average head grade of 36.4% zinc over the first five years of production”, said in a statement.