Copper mining re-launched at Mavoio mines in Angola

12 February 2010

Luanda, Angola, 12 Feb – Copper mining at the Mavoio mines in the Angolan province of Uíge is due to begin this year, said Lourenço Baptista Mahamba, of the State Secretariat for Geology and Mining, cited by newspaper Jornal de Angola.

The Mavoio mining region, which covers an area of 10,000 square kilometres including the municipalities of Bembe, Damba and Maquela do Zombo, in the prospecting phase involved investment of around US$22 million.

According to technical projections put forward by copper prospecting, exploration and production license-holders in the Mavoio region, monthly production is expected to be 20,000 tonnes of pure copper.

Lourenço Mahamba, who was the deputy minister for Geology and Mining in the previous government, said that the prospecting phase which was started two years ago by two Angolan companies, AP Services and Genius Mineral, provides certainties that the regions are rich in copper.

The region also has confirmed reserves of calcite, iron, pyrite and sulphur.

The mining area covers part of the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) as far as the south of Bembe municipality.

Jornal de Angola cites 90 year-old Pedro Paulo, a former worker at the Mavoio mine from 1945 to 1972 as saying that gold and probably diamonds had been proven to exist in the area.

The Mavoio mine, which was brought to a halt in 1972, had over 3,000 workers and production was estimated at over 30,000 tonnes of copper per year. (macauhub)