Low ore prices affect projects in Angola

17 October 2016

The fall in the price of ore, such as iron ore, on the international markets has slowed the execution of projects such as the one in Cassinga in Huila province, and forced Empresa Nacional de Ferro de Angola (Ferrangol) to reassess them, said the president of the company.

Diamantino Azevedo said that the price of minerals has fallen to such an extent that the company has had to review all plans already drawn up, including studies of economic feasibility, environmental impact and project implementation strategies.

The situation led to a two-year stoppage at the Cassinga mine, but the company is now trying to take over the project, based on current conditions involving low operating costs and the State’s greater focus on certain fees and charges.

The president of Ferrangol said the problem was not cantered on taxes but on a set of variables, such as ore transportation to the port or from the mines to the steel industry, or of related costs such as electricity and gas.

Besides Cassinga, he said, there is also an iron project in Kwanza Norte province, whose launch depends on ongoing negotiations with a private steel company that may develop it.

The Cassinga project, in Cateruca in the province of Huila, has a potential of 15 million tonnes of iron ore, and it is also expected to contain gold, and prospecting work for this metal should be completed this year.

Ferrangol is involved in prospecting, exploration, processing and marketing of metallic mineral resources (ferrous, nonferrous and precious), as well as others which are raw materials for steel production. (macauhub)