First Quantum Minerals Ltd.
LSE : FQM
TSX : FM

First Quantum Minerals Ltd.

August 27, 2010 17:02 ET

First Quantum Minerals Announces the Suspension of Operations at Its Frontier Mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo; Conference Call on Monday August 30, 2010

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Aug. 27, 2010) - First Quantum Minerals Ltd. ("First Quantum" or the "Company") (TSX:FM)(LSE:FQM) announced today that it has suspended operations at its Frontier mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo (the "RDC"). This suspension follows the withdrawal of Frontier's exploitation permit by CAMI, the RDC mining registry, and a letter received today from SODIMICO, the state-owned mining company which has purportedly been granted Frontier's titles, demanding that Frontier stop all mining and exports and leave the mining title areas.

Philip Pascall, First Quantum's CEO, said, "Today's threats by SODIMICO render it impossible to continue safe and orderly operations at Frontier. Our immediate concerns are to ensure the safety of our employees in what has progressively become an unstable environment. It is regrettable that the dispute could not have been resolved in a rational manner to ensure the continued operation of Frontier. The suspension of Frontier will unfortunately cause great hardship to our Congolese employees and the surrounding community, and the loss of much needed revenues for the RDC.".

First Quantum believes that any purported withdrawal of the Frontier permit is contrary to the Mining Code and RDC law, amounts to an expropriation of First Quantum's property, and was initiated against First Quantum as retribution for the commencement of arbitration relating to the Kolwezi Project, which was reported to have been acquired by London based ENRC on August 19, 2010. Frontier's operations employed approximately 1500 workers and it was the largest tax payer in the RDC in 2009.

First Quantum will continue to advance its rights through international arbitration with respect to the Kolwezi Project and now the Frontier mine and will pursue all other legal remedies available against third parties seeking enrichment through interference with First Quantum's legal rights.

The Company will hold a conference call to discuss these developments. Further updates will be provided as warranted.

Conference call and webcast details are as follows:

Date: Monday August 30, 2010
Time: 8:00 am (EST); 1:00 pm (BST)
Dial in: 416-695-6616 / 800-355-4959 /(North America) / 800-6578-9898 (International)

Replay: 416-695-5800 / 800-408-3053 (North America)
Replay Passcode: 3188864

On Behalf of the Board of Directors of First Quantum Minerals Ltd. 

G. Clive Newall, President

12g3-2b-82-4461

Listed in Standard and Poor's 

Certain statements and information herein, including all statements that are not historical facts, contain forward-looking statements and forward-looking information within the meaning of applicable U.S. and Canadian securities laws. Such forward-looking statements or information include but are not limited to statements or information with respect to future price of copper or gold, estimation of mineral reserves and mineral resources, our exploration and development program, estimated future expenses, exploration and development capital requirements, and our goals and strategies. Often, but not always, forward-looking statements or information can be identified by the use of words such as "plans", "expects" or "does not expect", "is expected", "budget", "scheduled", "estimates", "forecasts", "intends", "anticipates" or "does not anticipate" or "believes" or variations of such words and phrases or statements that certain actions, events or results "may", "could", "would", "might" or "will" be taken, occur or be achieved.

With respect to forward-looking statements and information contained herein, we have made numerous assumptions including among other things, assumptions about the price of copper, gold, nickel, PGE, cobalt and sulphuric acid, anticipated costs and expenditures and our ability to achieve our goals. Although our management believes that the assumptions made and the expectations represented by such statements or information are reasonable, there can be no assurance that a forward-looking statement or information herein will prove to be accurate. Forward-looking statements and information by their nature are based on assumptions and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause our actual results, performance or achievements, or industry results, to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements or information.

See our annual information form and our quarterly and annual management's discussion and analysis for additional information on risks, uncertainties and other factors relating to the forward-looking statements and information. Although we have attempted to identify factors that would cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those disclosed in the forward-looking statements or information, there may be other factors that cause actual results, performances, achievements or events not to be anticipated, estimated or intended. Also, many of the factors are beyond our control. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements or information. We undertake no obligation to reissue or update forward-looking statements or information as a result of new information or events after the date hereof except as may be required by law. All forward-looking statements and information made herein, are qualified by this cautionary statement.

Contact Information

  • First Quantum Minerals Ltd.
    Sharon Loung
    North American Contact
    (647) 346-3934 or Toll Free: 1 (888) 688-6577
    (604) 688-3818 (FAX)
    sharon.loung@fqml.com
    or
    First Quantum Minerals Ltd.
    Clive Newall, President
    United Kingdom Contact
    +44 140 327 3484
    +44 140 327 3494 (FAX)
    clive.newall@fqml.com
    www.first-quantum.com
    or
    Hogarth Partnership Ltd.
    Simon Hockridge
    +44 (0) 20 7357 9477