The Mining Association of British Columbia

The Mining Association of British Columbia

April 01, 2010 17:01 ET

The Mining Association of British Columbia: BC's First Major Metal Mine in a Decade Gets Final Approval

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - April 1, 2010) - The Mining Association of British Columbia (MABC) celebrated the final provincial approval this week of the Copper Mountain project outside of Princeton.

"The town of Princeton is humming this week with the sound of construction as BC's first major metal mine in over a decade moves into full construction," stated Pierre Gratton, President and CEO of MABC. "This is great news for British Columbia. The project, which is scheduled to commence full production in June 2011, will boost BC's copper production by 100 million pounds per year, create 258 high-paying direct jobs and bring many spin-off benefits to south central BC."

The B.C. mining sector currently contributes over $8 billion to the B.C. economy. The long term prognosis is for a robust B.C. mining sector, supported by demand for minerals and metals from emerging economies such as China and India. Over 20 B.C. mining projects are currently in the environmental review process. Around a half dozen of them are well-advanced and are planning to move to development in the next few years.

As stated by Mayor Randy McLean of Princeton; "This is a major milestone in the development of this great economic step for our community now and in the future. The entire community is ecstatic with this development, based on what we have seen to date and the very positive future it will afford us. With the impact of the difficulties currently being experienced in the forest industry, this example of growth in the mining sector bodes well not only for Princeton but other rural communities with potential for mining activity."

Large mining equipment is currently being delivered that will be utilized over the mines 17 year life. Pre-production mining is scheduled to start this summer, while construction of the concentrator is targeted to be completed by May 2011, in time for full commercial production of copper concentrate that is scheduled for June 2011. The Copper Mountain project received approval from the BC Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources for a mine permit amendment that enables the company to proceed with the development of BC's next major copper mine. The $438 million project is expected to create at least one million direct man hours of construction work over the next 15 months and is to be conducted by BC-based Gisborne Group, a multi-disciplined industrial construction company.

The MABC is regarded as the predominant voice of BC's mining industry representing the collective needs and interests of operating coal, metal and industrial mineral mining companies.

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