OVERVIEW revived by Australian miner Orion Minerals. A bankable feasibility study has been completed and it confirmed earlier positive findings. Another company exploring the potential of the Northern Cape as a source of high-quality base metals is SHiP Copper.
Mining assets The Northern Cape Department of Economic Development and Tourism’s “Economic and Investment Profile” reports that the province is responsible for: • 95% of South Africa’s diamond output • 97.6% of alluvial diamond mining • 13.4% of world lead exports. Aggeneys, in the Namaqualand district, is responsible for approximately 93% of South Africa’s lead production. • 80% of the world’s manganese resource • 25% of the manganese used in the world • 100% of South Africa’s tiger’s eye • Largest national production of sugilite (a semi-precious stone). Away from the underground kimberlite pipes and fissures, river and coastal deposits of diamonds are also present in the Northern Cape. Diamonds have been recovered along the Orange, Buffels, Spoeg, Horees, Groen, Doom and Swart rivers in the province, while coastal deposits have been found from the mouth of the Orange River to Lamberts Bay.
News Big Tree Copper has plans to list on one of South Africa’s stock exchanges. The company, which rebranded from the name Cape Copper Oxide Company, had to delay its planned 2021 listing because the licence of the ZARX exchange was suspended on liquidity concerns. The company intends to produce 2 000 tons per year of high purity copper plate from the retreatment of waste ore dumps. Ntsimbintle Holdings, a broad-based black empowerment investment company, has spent R1.3-billion to raise its stake in Jupiter Mines to 19.9%. The Tshipi Borwa manganese mine (majority-owned
ONLINE RESOURCES Minerals Council South Africa: www.mineralscouncil.org.za National Department of Mineral Resources: www.dmr.gov.za Northern Cape Department of Economic Development and Tourism: www.northern-cape.gov.za/dedat South African Mining Development Association: www.samda.co.za NORTHERN CAPE BUSINESS 2022/23
by Ntsimbintle Mining, with Jupiter a 49.9% shareholder) is an open-cast mine that is not only the largest single manganese mine and exporter from South Africa but is also one of the five largest manganese ore exporters in the world. Ntsimbintle consistently pays out good dividends to a variety of community groups and trusts. As of mid-2021, a total of R3.2-billion had been paid out. A subsidiary of Menar is developing a new manganese mine at Hotazel. Named the East Manganese mine project, the subsidiary, Sitatunga Manganese, expects to run for three years. The life of the Kolomela mine will be extended via a R7-billion expansion project that includes the development of a new pit. Kumba Iron Ore expects the new section to produce ore in 2024. Afrimat continues to expand its commodities portfolio with the purchase for R300-million of Coza Mining, an iron-ore mining company in the Northern Cape. The Afrimat transaction includes the share previously held by ArcelorMittal SA, which will receive iron ore from Coza in terms of a supply agreement. Coza’s three mines, Doornpan, Driehoek and Jenkins, are close to Afrimat’s exisiting Demineng Mine, which is south-west of Kuruman. The global mark et for base metals (which includes zinc and nickel) is in good shape because of trends in the energy and automotive markets and the fact that the global supply of copper is expected to decline. ■