via Hwange’s coal output to rise | The Herald September 1, 2015
HWANGE Colliery Company Limited expects to increase its coal output to 450 000 per month by year end from the current 150 000 tonnes boosted by the new equipment the company recently commissioned. In June, the company commissioned mining equipment worth more than $30 million in an effort to increase the coal output which had gone down to 150 000 per month as a result of operational challenges caused by obsolete equipment.
Hwange board chairman, Mr Farari Mutamangira told The Herald Business after the board and management toured the mining operations in Hwange recently that coal output was on the increase after the commissioning and fixing of the equipment which was faulty. “The main purpose of the visit was to review mining operations performance and conduct an assessment of the performance of the recently acquired mining equipment from BEML and Belaz. A site visit of the recently awarded new mine concessions in Western Areas, Lubimbi East and Lubimbi West was also conducted,” he said.
Mr Mutamangira said the board was satisfied with the mining operations on the ground. “The successful deployment of the new mining equipment marks a turning point on the production capability of the company and its ability to fulfil market requirements. The equipment has been deployed at the JKL pit, Chaba processing plant and Number 2 processing plant. We are happy with what we saw and are confident that the equipment will deliver on its expectations.”
Commenting on the new mining concessions awarded to the company by the Government through the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development, Mr Mutamangira said: “We are excited about this development, which demonstrates Government’s support for the long-term and sustainable success of Hwange Colliery.” The new concessions hold deposits in excess of a billion tonnes of coal consisting of both coking coal and thermal coal at Western areas and Lubimbi West and prevalence of coal – bed methane gas at Lubimbi East.
Hwange Colliery has already commenced exploration activities and will soon be going to the market in search of partners and financiers to develop the three mining concessions. “Hwange Colliery will also be diversifying its operations to include coal and it’s related by products as well as coal bed methane gas and its related beneficiation.”
The Hwange board chairman said the development assures the security of coal supply to the existing ZPC power generating plant and the stage 3 expansions. “It also complements the strategic turnaround initiatives that the company embarked on two years ago which include recapitalisation, contract mining, conversation of debt to equity, divisionalisation and customer diversification,” he said.
Hwange Colliery is exploring the establishment of its own coal fired power station which will meet its own electricity needs and security of supply for its operations in two years. Hwange Colliery Company limited is pursuing other concessions in the Southern Lowveld of Zimbabwe as part of the it’s strategic business development initiatives.
“By establishing an operation in the lowveld, Hwange export initiatives will be enhanced by closer proximity to the port in Mozambique and the South African market.”