Katanga Mining Announces First Copper Production Through New Solvent Extraction Plant and Converted Electro-Winning Facility

ZUG, Switzerland, Dec. 20, 2012 /CNW/ - Katanga Mining Limited (TSX: KAT) ("Katanga" or the "Company") today announces the successful production of the first copper cathodes from the newly commissioned facilities as part of the Updated Phase 4 Expansion programme.  The new facilities include the first Solvent Extraction ("SX") train with an annual capacity of 100,000 tonnes of copper and the first 144 Electro-Winning ("EW") cells with an annual capacity of 40,000 tonnes of copper.

The Updated Phase 4 project which commenced in Q3/2011 will enable Katanga to both increase total processing capacity as well as upgrade the quality of copper produced through the application of modern technologies and processes.  Mechanical completion of the Updated Phase 4 Expansion is expected in the third quarter of 2013.

Previously, Katanga's production has been significantly impacted by power disruptions in the region.  As mentioned in the publication of the Q3 / 2012 results, the new convertor, as part of the World Bank power project, and the new synchronous condenser, as part of the refurbishment of the DRC's power systems, were expected to be commissioned during the fourth quarter of 2012.  These new power facilities have been confirmed in operation as of 17 December 2012 and will help to increase and stabilise power capacity in the region. With the installed convertor and condenser, the DRC electricity provider, La Société Nationale d'Electricité ("SNEL") will be in a position to increase electricity transmission from the Inga power plant by 100MW (from 140MW to 240MW), therefore improving the reliability of supply to Katanga's operations.

Notes to Editors

About Katanga Mining Limited

Katanga Mining Limited operates a major mine complex in the Democratic Republic of Congo producing refined copper and cobalt. The Company has the potential to become Africa's largest copper producer and the world's largest cobalt producer. Katanga is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol KAT.

About the Phase 4 Expansion

These assets form part of the Updated Phase 4 Expansion which, as previously reported, include, among others:

  • A new 300,000 tonnes per annum SX plant;

  • A conversion of the older Electro-Refinery facility to a 200,000 tonnes per annum EW plant;

  • The erection of an in-pit crusher at KOV Open Pit;

  • New floatation circuits and other operational improvements at the KTC concentrator;

  • New Oxide Concentrate receiving Leach Tanks and Thickener, and Refurbishment of Sulfide Thickeners;

  • A new Sulfide Roaster;

  • The upgrade of the existing Luilu Plant including new Acid Offloading and Storage Area, new Lime Plant, Fe/Al/Zn removal plant and Cobalt precipitation.

Forward-looking Information

This press release contains "forward-looking information" within the meaning of Canadian securities legislation with respect to the Updated Phase 4 Expansion of Katanga's copper cobalt project.  Generally, forward-looking information can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "plans", "expects" or "does not expect", "is expected", "budget", "scheduled estimates", "forecasts", "outlook", "intends", "anticipates", "does not anticipate", or "believes", or variations of such words and phrases or statements that certain actions, events or results "may", "could", "would", "might", "will" or "will be taken", "occur", or "be achieved". Statements containing forward-looking information are based on the opinions and estimates of management as of the date such statements are made, and they are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual results, level of activity, performance or achievements of Katanga to be materially different from those expressed or implied by such statements, including but not limited to: risks relating to the refurbishment of existing facilities; unexpected events during construction, start-up, expansion or production; variations in ore grade or tonnes mined; future prices of copper and cobalt; futures prices of oxide concentrate; possible variations in ore reserves, grade or recovery rates; failure of plant, equipment or processes to operate as anticipated; political unrest and insurrection; acts of terrorism; accidents, labor disputes and other risks of the mining industry; delays in the completion of development or construction activities, as well as those factors discussed herein or referred to in the current annual information form of the Company filed with the securities regulatory authorities in Canada and available at www.sedar.com. Although management of Katanga has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in forward-looking statements, there may be other factors that cause results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. There can be no assurance that statements containing forward- looking information will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on statements containing forward-looking information. Katanga does not undertake to update any forward-looking information or statement that is incorporated herein, except in accordance with applicable securities laws. 

SOURCE Katanga Mining Limited




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