Mozambique shows promise

SYDNEY-based coal miner Riversdale Mining has commenced an intensive exploration program in Mozambique and plans to fast-track development of its metallurgical coal resources for production in 2009.
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Chris Harvie of Datem Moore, right, is welcomed to the company by chief executive John Moore.

Angie Tomlinson

The Riversdale project is located in the Lower Zambezi Coal Basin of Mozambique in four separate provinces.

The tenements cover a total area of about 203,000 hectares, including the Moatize Coal Province, which Riversdale said is considered to be one of the largest known undeveloped coking and thermal coal regions in the world.

To date, Riversdale has established a base camp, purchased two diamond drill rigs and commenced drilling at its tenement.

Initial drilling activity on the Benga licence has found an intersection of two coal seams identified as the Chipanga and Bananeras seams; seam widths of 15m and 8.4m at depths of 162m and 69m respectively; and coking properties indicative of those required for a hard coking coal product.

“The immediate priority for Riversdale is to undertake exploration drilling to define an initial resource of coking coal sufficient to complete a bankable feasibility study and to arrange finance for Stage 1 with a proposed capacity of 2-3 million saleable tonnes per annum for its export operation,” Riversdale said in its December quarterly report.

Discussions are already underway with infrastructure providers of rail and port facilities to ensure access for initial anticipated coal production in 2009.

Riversdale’s producing operation – Zululand Anthracite Colliery – recoded an output of 158,430t during the December quarter. The company says it will now concentrate on optimising production at the mine.

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