HomeMarket NewsMiningBarrick accelerates Zambian copper mine expansion, eyes 2028 first production

Barrick accelerates Zambian copper mine expansion, eyes 2028 first production

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Barrick’s Ambitious Expansion Plans for Lumwana Copper Mine in Zambia

Local Prosperity and Growth

Since 2019, Lumwana has injected nearly $3 billion into the Zambian economy, comprising royalties, taxes, salaries, and procurement of goods and services from local businesses. Notably, local procurement accounted for over 81% of the copper mine’s total spend last year, cementing its pivotal role in fortifying the Zambian economic landscape.

Business Accelerator Program and Community Upliftment

Barrick, as part of its expansion initiative, has initiated a business accelerator program aimed at enhancing the business acumen of Zambian contractors within its supply chain. This strategic move seeks to empower these contractors, enabling them to expand and diversify their businesses, ensuring sustainability beyond the lifespan of the Lumwana mine. In addition, Barrick’s REDD+ initiative is set to elevate host communities by conserving the natural forest surrounding the mine, with allocated resources and community engagement already in progress.

Expansive Plans and Economic Implications

The estimated cost of the Lumwana expansion stands at nearly $2 billion, with construction earmarked to commence by late 2024. Concomitantly, a comprehensive feasibility study is projected for completion by year-end. The transformation of Lumwana from a once struggling mine into a significant contributor to Barrick’s burgeoning copper portfolio reflects a remarkable turnaround, notably supported by the re-opening of the Malundwe pit and the transition to owner mining.

Strategic Vision and Market Impact

Barrick’s strategic refocusing in 2019 has proven instrumental in revitalizing Lumwana, propelling it to become a substantial asset within the company’s copper portfolio. Furthermore, substantiating its commitment to bolstering its African foothold, Barrick aims to add more copper assets to its portfolio, with a vision to double its copper production by 2031, reaching an impressive 1 billion pounds. This strategic expansion is anticipated to reverberate positively in the market, potentially yielding far-reaching economic implications.

Market Response and Potential

The market has signaled an optimistic response to Barrick’s ambitious plans, with shares of Barrick Gold surging by 1% on the TSX by 11:30 a.m. ET. This bullish sentiment is a testament to the confidence investors place in Barrick’s strategic vision. As of the latest assessment, the company’s market capitalization stood at an impressive C$37.3 billion ($27.6bn), affirming its robust position in the market, propelling it towards a phase of substantial growth and advancement.

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