Swiss Giant Glencore to invest $1.1 billion in Zambian Mopani Copper Mine
The Switzerland-based global mining giant Glencore said it will invest over $1.1 billion in its Mopani copper complex in Zambia over the next two years. This investment will improve the mine’s operational efficiency and life expectancy. It is proposed to turn the Mopani Copper Mines into a world-class mining operation by 2023. Glencore’s expansion and upgrade plan for Mopani will return output to 110,000 tonnes per year by 2018 and reduce costs at the same time. This will enable the Swiss giant to take advantage of the potential for a gradual recovery in copper prices over the next three to five years. Mopani Copper Mines is owned by Carlisa Investments, which is a joint venture company consisting of Glencore International (73.1%), First Quantum Minerals (16.9%) and ZCCM-IH (10%). In 2000, Glencore acquired the historic Mopani complex in Kitwe province after the mine was privatized and has since spent $3 billion in modernising infrastructure and capital expansion programmes. The mine which employs 4,500 workers, is running at less than half its capacity with expected 2016 output just under 47,000 tonnes.