Ivanhoe sets new production record at giant Kamoa-Kakula copper mine in DRC

Canadian mining giant Ivanhoe Mines has reported a new production record in the first quarter of 2022 at its Kamoa-Kakula copper mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

The large-scale mine, which began producing copper concentrates in May 2021, produced 55,602 tonnes in the first three months of the year, while operator Kamoa Copper milled 1.08 million ore tonnes during the quarter, at an average feed grade of 5.91% copper.

Kamoa-Kakula also set a new daily output record on April 08th 2022, with 25,126 tonnes milled and 1,202 tonnes of copper produced.

Following planned phased expansions, Kamoa-Kakula will become the second largest copper mine in the world with the highest grades among major operations, according to Ivanhoe founder and co-chairman Robert Friedland.

The Kamoa-Kakula Phase 2 – a 3.8 million tonnes per annum concentrator plant – successfully declared commercial production last week. “The Phase 2 concentrator has been successfully commissioned in record time,” said Kamoa Copper’s CEO Mark Farren.

“We can expect to see a doubling of copper output for the remainder of this year, as well as further increases into 2023 as the de-bottlenecking programme is executed,” he added.

The firm hopes the Phase 2 commissioning will help it achieve the upper level of its 290-340,000 tonnes guidance for copper concentrate in 2022.

Ivanhoe has also pledged to produce the industry’s ‘greenest’ copper as it works to become the first net zero operational carbon emitter among the world’s Tier 1 copper producers.