Zambia lets First Quantum restart dam project halted since May

Zambia, Africa’s top copper producer, has lifted an environmental ruling that forced First Quantum Minerals (TSX:FM)(LON:FQM) to halt work at its Chisolo dam at the miner’s $1.7-billion Sentinel copper project last May.

According to the Metal Bulletin (subs. required) the dike is vital for the supply of water to both the Vancouver-based company’s Sentinel copper mine and its planned Enterprise nickel project.

Sentinel is expected to come on stream by the mid-2014 and produce around 270,000 to 300,000 metric tons of copper a year in its initial six years of operations.

The Canadian firm already operates Kansanshi mine, Zambia's largest copper mine by output.