China Molybdenum Company (CMOC) and Sumitomo have approved a new block cave mine at Northparkes Mines (Northparkes), named E26 Lift 1 North.
Northparkes is a copper and gold mine located approximately 27 kilometres north-west of Parkes, in the Central West of New South Wales.
In 2015, Northparkes became the worlds most automated underground mine with 100 per cent of production from automated loaders and was also the first mine in Australia to use the highly efficient and now widely-used block cave mining method.
CMOC and Sumitomo’s new investment will be more than $200 million over a three and half year period, with construction on track to commence this month.
The project will deliver 11 kilometres of underground development, an underground primary crusher, conveying systems and associated infrastructure.
The project is estimated to produce approximately 40 million tonnes of ore over a 10-year period, with full production expected to occur in mid-2022. The project is expected to employ 180 people during peak construction.
Executive Chairman and CEO, CMOC Group, Steele Li, said they are excited to see this project come to fruition and to watch Northparkes continue to develop and grow.
“Northparkes plays a pivotal role in our strong and long-term presence in Australia as an internationally renowned mining company,” he said.
Northparkes Acting Managing Director, Hubert Lehman, also commented that this is a major investment in the future of their business and an exciting time for Northparkes.
“We look forward to continuing to contribute to the local community in which we live and work for years to come,” he said.
“We know the exploration potential of Northparkes and we believe we will discover more copper and gold deposits to take us even further into the future.”
Northparkes has approved development consent to mine until 2032.