Zambeze firms up as a coke coal mine

RIVERSDALE Mining has confirmed its Zambeze project in Mozambique can produce hard coking coal as it prepares to complete a prefeasibility study for the project by the end of the year.
Zambeze firms up as a coke coal mine Zambeze firms up as a coke coal mine Zambeze firms up as a coke coal mine Zambeze firms up as a coke coal mine Zambeze firms up as a coke coal mine

A snap of Zambeze coke, image courtesy of Riversdale.

Lou Caruana

The initial CSR results come from two coal seams which will make up more than half of Zambeze’s production for the first 30 years of mine life. Further testwork is necessary to consolidate the findings.

In response to the results, Riversdale managing director Steve Mallyon said “Zambeze’s high coke strength, combined with its massive 9 billion tonne coal resource, confirms Zambeze’s potential to be a Tier 1 hard coking coal operation”

Remaining productive seams at Zambeze are planned to undergo coke tests in the early stages of the Zambeze definitive feasibility study in the first quarter of 2011.

An assessment of the coal quality of the remaining seams indicates that, on average, they will produce coke of comparable strength to the two seams already tested, Mallyon said.

Riversdale estimates that initial production from the project should begin in 2014.

Zambeze, which is Riversdale’s second project in the region, is the subject of a memorandum of understanding with Wuhan Iron and Steel (WISCO) for the sale of a 40% stake for $US800 million.

Riversdale’s first Mozambique-based operation, the Benga Coal Project (65% RIV, 35% Tata Steel), is undergoing construction with first exports targeted for the fourth quarter of 2011.

At full production, the Benga mine will export 6 million tonnes per annum of prime hard coking coal and 4Mtpa of export thermal coal.

Riversdale also holds other coal exploration tenements at various stages of development. An exploration program, targeting the delineation of a third hard coking coal operation, is in the advanced planning phase.