The Capricorn copper mine in Queensland has been granted a prescribed project status by the State Government which allows the former Mount Gordon mine to reopen within the year.
According to Minister for State Development Dr Anthony Lynham, the prescribed project status will allow the coordinator-general to assist with acquiring Government approvals for the $152 million project.
The Capricorn copper mine is located 125-kilometres north of Mount Isa and the project is expected to generate approximately 300 construction and operational jobs for the region.
“Jobs and business opportunities in the north-west mineral province are a priority for this government.
"This is all about getting almost 90 construction jobs during construction and more than 200 direct operational jobs underway and available by the third quarter of 2017,” Dr Lynham said.
The former Mount Gordon mine was sold Capricorn Copper – a joint venture comprising of Brisbane-based Lighthouse Minerals and Melbourne-based EMR Capital – back in 2015 after operations were suspended in 2013 due to declining world copper prices.
The joint venture said that the Capricorn copper mine is expecting its first ore production in October 2017. Capricorn Copper also stated that they are committed to prioritising employing workers, suppliers and contractors from Mount Isa and other communities from north-west Queensland including Cloncurry.
Once the mine is re-opened, it will be able to produce up to 30,000 tonnes per annum of copper metal concentrates over an initial 10-year mine life.
Dr Lynham said that Capricorn Copper is looking to invest another $14 million for exploration over the next two years which will help identify more resources in its permit areas as well as extend the life of the mine beyond the initial 10 years.
“This is new investment in one of the world’s most valuable base metal areas, and clear evidence of the opportunities still to be had in the north-west,” Dr Lynham said.
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