First Quantum Minerals Ltd.

First Quantum Minerals Ltd.

December 12, 2007 14:00 ET

First Quantum Minerals Discusses DRC Border Closure

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Dec. 12, 2007) - First Quantum Minerals Ltd. ("First Quantum" or the "Company") (TSX:FM)(LSE:FQM) announces receipt of a letter dated November 28, 2007, from the Governor of the Province of Katanga, Democratic Republic of Congo ("DRC"), the Honorable Moise Katumbi, ordering the closure of the DRC border to the export of copper ores and exploration core samples by First Quantum from the Lonshi mine to Zambia. Furthermore, First Quantum was advised not to ship copper concentrate from its Frontier mine in the DRC to Zambia. Consequently the Frontier concentrate storage shed has filled up with product resulting in plant operations having to be suspended on December 11.

First Quantum has been working with the Governor's office to ensure that all issues raised are addressed. At the Lonshi mine the issues include; communicating details about the mining of the final remaining oxide ore and the mine's various social programs. At the Frontier mine the issues include; improving the measurement procedures for concentrate movement on the DRC side of the border and communicating the export procedures already agreed to with the relevant DRC Government authorities to the Governor's office.

Subsequently, the issues regarding concentrate movements from Frontier have been resolved and the transportation of concentrate from the DRC to Zambian smelter facilities will commence shortly. Furthermore, plant operations at Frontier are expected to recommence in a few days after reduction of the concentrate stockpile. The restart of Lonshi Mine ore shipments is awaiting final authorization from the DRC authorities.

The mining operations at both the Frontier Mine and the Lonshi Mine have continued unaffected. Additional information will be published when available.

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

G. Clive Newall, President


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Certain information contained in this news release are "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and forward-looking information under applicable Canadian securities legislation. Such forward-looking statements or information, including but not limited to those with respect to the prices of gold, copper, cobalt and sulphuric acid, estimated future production, estimated costs of future production, the Company's hedging policy and permitting time lines, involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements or information. Such factors include, among others, the actual prices of copper, gold, cobalt and sulphuric acid, the factual results of current exploration, development and mining activities, changes in project parameters as plans continue to be evaluated, as well as those factors disclosed in the Company's documents filed from time to time with the Alberta, British Columbia, and Ontario Securities Commissions, the Autorite des marches financiers in Quebec, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission and the London Stock Exchange.

The Toronto Stock Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

Contact Information

  • First Quantum Minerals Ltd. - North America
    Geoff Chater
    (604) 688-6577 or Toll Free: 1-888-688-6577
    (604) 688-3818 (FAX)
    First Quantum Minerals Ltd. - United Kingdom
    Clive Newall
    +44 140 327 3484
    +44 140 327 3494 (FAX)
    Hogarth Partnership Ltd.
    Harriet Pask or Sarah MacLeod
    +44 (0) 20 7357 9477