The government of Zimbabwe through Mines and Mining Development Deputy Minister Hon Polite Kambamura has expressed satisfaction with the progress by Kamativi Mining Company (KMC) at its Kamativi Mine.
Speaking at the tour of Kamativi Mine, the Deputy Minister praised KMC for its adherence to the government’s objective of local beneficiation and value addition in minerals exports. He cited KMC as one of the country’s most exceptional investors.
Kambamura further lauded KMC for investing in state-of-the-art equipment, a move that he expects will improve the mine’s productivity levels.
“Kamativi Mining Company (KMC) has purchased a lot of state-of-the-art equipment, drill rigs, dump trucks, excavators, and craters. They are already on site and they have already started stripping the open pits to expose the old bearing rock,” Kambamura said.
Additionally, the Deputy Minister noted that KMC had been successful in its exploration, having drilled more than 19,000 meters and exposed more than 20 million tons of ore. These exploratory activities have extended the life of the once-abandoned Kamativi Mine to ten years.
“They are continuing exploration and drilled over 19,000 meters and exposed more than 20 million tons of ore reserves, which puts the life of the mine span of about 10 years,” Kambamura said.
He said the first phase will be done by October 2023 and KMC will invest a total of us$100 million by 2024 furthermore construct a phase two plant for lithium beneficiation.
“We are looking forward to this mine finishing the first phase in October this year, where they have already sunk 25 million US dollars. And come early 2024, they will be finishing the second phase, which is going to grow to about 75 million US dollars, to make a total of 100 million US dollars. This shows seriousness on the side of the investor. Also, following the government’s ban on the export of raw lithium ore, KMC has gone further to construct a lithium beneficiation plant. They are also going to resuscitate the old plant and we are looking forward to the construction of the plant by October this year, which is expected to be handling 1,000 tons of ore per day. Come early 2024, they will be producing about 350,000 tons of lithium concentrates from 2.3 million tons of mined ores per year.
He said progress at the mine places the Kamativi as one of the largest lithium producers in Zimbabwe which is expected to employ 1500 locals.
“So this shows much, much progress and this also positions this mine as one of the country’s largest lithium producers. And in the long term, we are looking forward to doing lithium salts. After doing concentrates, they will further beneficiate to lithium salts. So we are much, much excited about this project, given that after the second phase, the mine will be able to employ between 1,100 to 1,500 Zimbabwean employees.
Kambamura singled out KMC for its commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), despite its non-production status.
“Currently, KMC is employing over 250 employees, with a bigger chunk of employees coming from the local community. And one impressive thing is that the company has not waited to start production to work with the community. They have already drilled eight boreholes, and they have already renovated the local clinic, with some donations, and they are working well with the local community. KMC is one good example of an investor who follows the government’s vision of local beneficiation and value addition for the export of minerals. So we are looking forward to the company finishing the first and second phases, and we will come for commissioning,” Kambamura concluded.