Katanga Mining Limited

Katanga Mining Limited

November 27, 2007 09:27 ET

Katanga Starts Luilu Metallurgical Plant on Schedule

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - Nov. 27, 2007) - Katanga Mining Limited (TSX:KAT) ("Katanga" or the "Company") today announces that it has completed rehabilitation of the concentrate roaster and started cold commissioning at the Luilu Metallurgical Plant ("Luilu") at its copper-cobalt joint venture in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Cold commissioning, which is the process of systematic checks that takes place immediately prior to start-up, is expected to be completed at the end of the first week in December. The concentrate roaster, which transforms sulfide concentrates into a form suitable for leaching, will then be fed with concentrate for the first time in several years. First copper production is expected to follow 10 days after the start-up of the roaster.

A major rehabilitation program has been carried out at Luilu. Work on the concentrate roaster included restoring the structural integrity of the roaster building and roaster shell, rebuilding fans, refurbishing the repulping ball mill, and replacing pumps and the roaster's refractory lining. The leaching and thickening tanks and 54 copper electrowinning cells have also undergone extensive refurbishment. The concentrate receiving area at Luilu has been operational since July 2007 and approximately 5,500 tonnes of dried sulfide concentrate has been stockpiled ahead of the roaster becoming operational.

The start-up of Luilu completes Phase I of the joint venture's four-phase rehabilitation program on schedule. It is expected that Phase I will be completed within the original US$176 million budget. Copper production will begin in December as originally intended. Output for 2008 is forecast at around 100 million pounds of copper and 5 million pounds of cobalt.

When Kamoto Copper Company, Katanga's joint venture, began managing the site in July 2006, it launched the first phase of an intensive capital expenditure program to restart copper production by the end of 2007. All major milestones have been achieved to date and the project continues on track and on budget. The Kamoto Underground Mine began operation in March 2007, followed by the Musonoie-T17 open pit mine in June of this year. Concentrate was produced at the Kamoto Concentrator in July 2007, and both the sulfide and oxide circuits for Phase I are now materially complete.

Arthur Ditto, Chairman, President and CEO of Katanga stated: "The Luilu Metallurgical Plant was in ruins when we began managing the site. To get this facility, the concentrator, and mines operational in 17 months and within budget is an outstanding achievement. The accomplishments of the engineering, construction management, operating and corporate teams have been remarkable and are a tribute to the expertise, dedication, and persistence of many very talented and capable people. We are now making the transition from developer to producer and look forward to our first full year of production in 2008."

To learn more about Katanga Mining Limited, please visit our website at www.katangamining.com.

Katanga Mining Limited operates a major copper-cobalt mine complex in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Copper production is expected to begin in December 2007 and the site is expected to reach full production in 2011, when 150,000 tonnes of refined copper and 8,000 tonnes of refined cobalt will be produced a year. The Company will be among the world's lowest cost producers.

Katanga Mining Limited is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol KAT.

Contact Information

  • Katanga Mining Limited
    Anu Dhir
    Vice President, Corporate Development
    +44 (0)20 7440 5822
    Katanga Mining Limited
    David Orford
    Manager, Communications
    +44 (0)20 7440 5828
    Katanga Mining Limited
    Gavin Wood
    Analyst, Corporate Development
    +44 (0)20 7440 5854
    Website: www.katangamining.com
    Fleishman-Hillard (Toronto)
    Caroline Spivak
    (416) 645-8185