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New Century to start zinc shipments in reputation bid

Metal News - Published on Thu, 28 Jun 2018

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Reuters quoted Mr Patrick Walta mineral processor’s managing director New Century as saying that New Century Resources is on track to turn a giant tailings dam into the world’s fifth-biggest source of zinc as it defies doubters to make its first shipment in August. New Century is processing the tailings, or the residue left over from previously mined ore, at the Century mine, previously the world’s largest zinc mine. The company expects the project will prove it is possible to rehabilitate mine sites for profit in an industry where remediation has been seen only as a cost.

Mr Walta who first started looking at economic mine rehabilitation with his firm Raging Bull a decade ago, said in an interview that “We want to be the Australian premier mine rehabilitation company. For us, Century is great. It puts us on the map.”

Walta, a metallurgist by background, and Raging Bull, had been in talks with MMG for years on ways to recover more zinc from the still mineral-rich tailings and rehabilitate the mine, which had a hefty AUD 193 million (USD 142.2 million) closure provision.

New Century’s plan was to slash costs by re-processing the tailings using MMG’s existing plant, environmental permits, land use agreements and pipeline to a nearby port.

Mr Walta said that “We think by the end of next year it becomes a de-risked project, a top five zinc producer in the lowest cost quartile. And there’s plenty of opportunity to expand.”

New Century shot into view last year when its former incarnation, Century Bull, secured the tailings rights to the mine in the western part of Australia’s Queensland state that had depleted its resources and closed. It acquired the rights from MMG Ltd, the Australian unit of China Minmetals Corp.

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Posted By : Rabi Wangkhem on Thu, 28 Jun 2018
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