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18 Jun 2020 | 13:20

Jubilee Metals secures rights to copper tailings in Zambia

(Sharecast News) - Jubilee Metals Group has secured the rights to around 150 million tonnes of copper-containing surface tailings, targeted to be upgraded at site and refined at its Sable Refinery in Zambia, it announced on Thursday. The AIM-traded firm said it secured the rights to the material through its subsidiary Braemore Holdings Mauritius, by entering into a joint venture agreement with the mining rights holder Star Tanganika, to process the tailings.

It said the project would target the production of copper concentrate through a dedicated new copper concentrating facility.

Jubilee said the project alone held the potential to produce copper concentrates in excess of the total Sable Refinery capacity of 14,000 tonnes per annum of copper cathode.

The company said its objective was to increase the capacity to more than 25,000 tonnes of copper per year over time, based on feed sources and projects currently under review.

It said current production had confirmed the Sable Refinery's ability to produce A-grade copper cathode from tails, with an operating margin of over 35% at current prices.

The board added that its surface platinum group metals and chrome operations had returned to full capacity, following scaled-down operations during April and May in line with South Africa's Covid-19 lockdown regulations, while the company maintained a "strong" cash position, currently at £9.2m.

That cash position was after Jubilee settled both the final payment for the additional platinum group metals and chrome rights acquired in November, as well as settling historical debt of £2.03m.

"Our presence in Zambia over the past year since the acquisition of the Sable Refinery has reasserted our belief that many opportunities exist to expand our business model into all aspects of copper in the country," said chief executive officer Leon Coetzer.

"This agreement with Tanganika is in line with our strategy to take a leading role in the processing of surface tailings in Zambia by applying our proven technical know-how and IP. Zambia contains vast quantities of copper tailings requiring Jubilee's skills to unlock these opportunities."

Coetzer said the company planned to construct a copper concentrator at the tailings resource, which could supply concentrate to the Sable Refinery, while selling excess concentrate into the market.

"We are well positioned to take advantage of the expected increasing need for copper as the world's demand for cleaner energy such as electric vehicles rapidly expands."

At 1303 BST, shares in Jubilee Metals Group were up 6.16% at 3.88p.
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