Champion Iron unearths 33.4% IRR for Bloom Lake expansion

Image by Champion Iron

Montreal’s Champion Iron must like the feasibility study done for the phase two expansion of its Bloom Lake iron mine 400 km north of Sept-Iles, near the town of Fermont. The after tax internal rate of return is a healthy 33.4% and the net present value is $1.53 billion.

The expansion would double output to 15 million tonnes of 66.2% iron concentrate annually. The initial capital requirement is $589.8 million. After 21 months of construction, the life of the mine would be 20 years. Proven and probable reserves are estimated to be 807 million tonnes averaging 29.0% iron.

A second concentrator is to be built, largely based on the existing mill but with minor changes to improve performance. The main change will be the addition of a scavenger circuit to boost recovery and respond to feed variations. The major processing equipment is currently at the mine site thanks to previous owner Cliffs Natural Resources, that  abandoned its attempt to expand Bloom Lake.

The Champion board has already approved a budget of $68 million to advance work on the expansion through the end of the year. The company expects to complete additional financing by mid-2020.

This story first appeared in the Canadian Mining Journal

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