Operations at Kingking mine seen to start in 2017
DAVAO CITY, Philippines—Toronto Stock Exchange-listed St. Augustine Gold and Copper Ltd. (Sagcl) has expressed optimism that its $2-billion Kingking project in Pantukan, Compostela Valley will start commercial operations by 2017.
Sagcl country manager Clyde Gillespie said this optimism was shared by the company’s investors despite “setbacks” at the Environmental Management Bureau.
In March, the EMB returned Sagcl’s environmental impact study (EIS) due to “issues” that needed to be addressed, Gillespie said.
He did not specify the issues that EMB wanted resolved, but added that Sagcl still hoped to secure the EIS and the declaration of mining project feasibility (DMPF) before the year ends.
The two documents are required before the mining company could start large-scale operations, Gilliespie said.
The Kingking project is expected to produce up to 3.2 billion pounds of copper, 5.4 million ounces of gold, and 11.7 million ounces of silver, Sagcl said in its 22-year mine plan.
The potential of Kingking was first made public by Nationwide Development Corp. (Nadecor) in 1996 although small-scale miners have long been extracting gold from the area.
While the future of Sagcl’s Kingking project looks bright, that of the Tampakan mining project in South Cotabato remains dim as the provincial government stands by its ban on open-pit mining activities.
In January, Glencore Xstrata Plc. announced that it would divest its majority stake in the $5.9-billion copper and gold project owing to delays in construction and other activities.
Indophil holds a 37.5-percent stake in the mining project.
The Alsons group, San Miguel Corp, Philex Mining Corp. and SM Group have a combined 30 percent stake in Indophil.
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