KGHM applies for environmental permit for proposed gold, copper mine in Canada

KGHM applies for environmental permit for proposed gold, copper mine in Canada

The mine, located near the Canadian city of Kamloops in British Columbia, was a previous producer of copper and gold under Teck Resources from 1989-1991 and 1994-1997. (Image courtesy of KGHM- Ajax)

Polish miner KGHM, the world's eighth largest copper producer, has applied for an environmental permit for its proposed Ajax open-pit mine near the Canadian city of Kamloops in British Columbia.

The company — Europe's No.2 copper producer — expects to have secured all necessary permits sometime between late 2016 and early 2017.

The Ajax open-pit gold and copper mine, a joint venture between KGHM (80%) and Canadian junior Abacus Mining & Exploration (20%) is expected to produce 109 million pounds of copper and 99,000 ounces of gold a year over the two decades of expected mine life.

The application is now subject to a review and screening period, which is expected to take 30 days, Abacus said in a statement.

To help people better understand the contents of the Application/EIS, independent consultants hired by KAM are in the process of finalizing “plain language summaries” of the individual chapters in the document. Both will be available for public review soon, KGHM said in a separate statement.

Based on economic data and assumptions in the Ajax Project’s feasibility study, KGHM estimates the project will employ about 500 people and contribute up to $550 million dollars in federal and provincial taxes, $210 million in British Columbia Mining Act tax, and $110 million in municipal taxes.

KGHM said it plans to host several open houses during the public comment period to explain project-related data and answer questions.