NICKEL miner, Bindura Nickel Corporation (BNC) has completed the first re-deepening phase of Trojan Mine paving the way for improved productivity.
In an update last week, BNC chairperson Muchadeyi Masunda said the re-deepening works at their subsidiary, Trojan Nickel Mine was completed and successfully commissioned after an eight-week shutdown.
The project involved two major components, the shaft re-deepening and Tie-in, and involved deepening of the existing sub-vertical shaft system by 244 meters.
This was to enable access to known ore resources below the then existing shaft bottom.
“The benefits of the project on mining, mineral resource and mobile equipment efficiency for the business include improved productivity – due to significant reduction of trucking distances underground and elimination of double handling of material,” Masunda said in his report.
“Creation of mining flexibility for both disseminated and massive ores and increase in capacity utilisation which enables sustainable production and conservation in mining, through the transition from a high grade/ low volume plan to a high volume/low grade plan will also be enabled.”
The development also facilitated deeper exploration and evaluation and the establishment of deeper level platforms for further down-dip exploration drilling, extending mine’s lifespan and contributing to its business continuity.
Meanwhile, during the financial year ended March 31 2021, nickel in concentrate sold was 5 496 tonnes, compared to 5 685 tonnes sold in the previous year.
Global nickel prices improved by 7% during the period under review, to an average of US$14 999 per tonne .
Masunda said the increase in nickel prices more than compensated for the reduction in sales volume.
As a result, the company realised a 13% increase in annual turnover to US$59.2 million with cost of sales increasing by 19% to US$44.9 million, compared to US$38 million in the prior year.
“This was mainly due to the impact on local input costs, of disparities between the auction exchange rates and the exchange rates that suppliers use in their pricing models, as well as the high cost of maintaining the aged mobile mine plant and equipment,” added Masunda .