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Jubilee’s Bold Expansion: Elevating Chrome and Copper Mining

Strategic Growth and Innovation Mark Jubilee’s Thriving Mining Ventures

by Oluwatosin Alabi

Jubilee, a leading force in the mining industry, is embarking on an ambitious expansion of its Thutse Project, adding a 50,000 tpm feed processing module. This decision follows the successful completion of the first chrome module in August 2023 and propels the company towards its goal of producing 2.1 Mt of chrome concentrate annually.

Jubilee’s CEO, Leon Coetzer, highlighted the company’s resilience and adaptability in a dynamic global market. The expansion at Thutse aligns with Jubilee’s strategic goal of increasing chrome concentrate production. The chrome operations, capable of funding their expansion, will undergo internal capital and funding approval processes before commencing the expansion.

Despite operational interruptions in Zambia, including delays in the Roan front-end upgrade due to import delays, Jubilee managed to grow its copper output. The company is addressing these challenges, operating Roan at reduced capacity until a solution for the delayed electrical components, including local manufacturing, is found.

Jubilee’s Thutse complex in South Africa is making significant progress. The company is negotiating additional Life of Mine (LOM) partnerships and expanding its chrome operations with an additional processing module. This expansion, costing around US$6 million, will increase the annual chrome concentrate production to over 2 Mtpa.

In Zambia, Jubilee has secured one of the largest copper waste rock assets on the surface. The company formed a strategic partnership with Abu Dhabi-based International Resources Holding RSC Limited (IRH). A special purpose vehicle (SPV) funded by IRH will acquire the copper waste rock asset and implement the processing solution.

Project Roan is undergoing a significant upgrade, including a new 50 tpm modular unit, allowing for the processing of multiple feed sources. The project, despite the delays, is positioned for a considerable operational rebound once the upgrades are completed.

The Sable Refinery is undergoing an expansion of its sulphide copper recovery circuit, scheduled for Q3 CY2024. This expansion is in anticipation of increased copper concentrate delivery from various copper expansion projects.

Project M (Monkoyo Copper Resource), near the Sable Refinery, is progressing on schedule. The project aims to process copper-containing ore, previously considered waste, and supply quality copper to the Sable Refinery starting early 2025.

The Mufulira Slag project, in collaboration with Mopani Copper Mines, targets the processing of historical slag waste. The project is undergoing a joint technical review to create an environmentally friendly processing solution.

Jubilee maintains its production guidance for the 2024 financial year, with 1.45 Mt of chrome concentrate and 42,000 PGM ounces. The copper guidance remains at 5,850 tonnes, subject to the resolution of the delay in the Project Roan upgrade.

Jubilee’s strategic expansion in both chrome and copper projects demonstrates the company’s commitment to growth and sustainability in the mining industry. With a focus on operational excellence, strategic growth, and environmental responsibility, Jubilee is well-positioned to continue its trajectory of success. The company’s resilience in the face of global market challenges, coupled with its innovative approach to mining solutions, underscores its role as a pivotal player in the sustainable development of the metals processing industry.

Jubilee’s ongoing expansions in South Africa and Zambia, strategic partnerships, and commitment to operational excellence underline its role as a leader in the mining sector. The company’s approach to addressing environmental concerns and leveraging technological advancements in processing units sets a standard for sustainable and efficient mining practices. As Jubilee continues to navigate the complexities of the global mining landscape, its strategic initiatives and production guidance for 2024 reflect a future-oriented approach, balancing growth with sustainability and operational efficiency.

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