SAGITTARIUS MINES INC., THE local subsidiary of Xstrata Copper, is investing in a coal-fired power plant to support its operations at the $5-billion Tampakan copper-gold mine in southern Mindanao.
?It would account for 10 to 20 percent (of the project cost),? SMI president Peter Forrestal told reporters after the Asia CEO Forum yesterday at the Tower Club in Makati City.
The power plant will have a capacity of 400 megawatts and should be built before the Tampakan project goes into production.
?We?re projecting full-scale production in 2016 but there will be some in 2015,? Forrestal said.
The power plant will be built beside a port to be constructed for concentrate handling but SMI has yet to decide on the location of the power plant and the port, company communications manager John Arnaldo said.
SMI is choosing between two locations: Bawing in General Santos City and Malalag in Davao del Sur.
SMI officials said the impending entry of Zijin Mining Group Co. Ltd., China?s largest gold producer and third-largest copper producer, into the Tampakan project would not affect Xstrata?s controlling interest in the venture.
The Chinese company is set to acquire Australian firm Indophil Resources NL?s 37.5-percent stake in the Tampakan project.
Xstrata has a controlling 62.5-percent interest in Tampakan, which is considered the largest undeveloped copper-gold deposit in Southeast Asia.
At a project cost of $5 billion, it would also be the single largest foreign direct investment in the Philippines.