Kumba Iron Ore needed a new mining permit to access about a third of reserves at its Sishen mine, it said yesterday.
The Anglo American unit required a right to properties on which Transnet had a railway line, the company said. The strip is 14km long and separates the current Sishen pit from part of the extension.
Transnet had agreed to sell this land to Kumba, while the mining company had sold the properties for a new line to the transport utility.
Kumba had lodged the request for the mining right with the Mineral Resources Department on Monday, spokesman Gert Schoeman said.
“Should the applications be unsuccessful, the expansion of the Sishen pit in a westerly direction may be materially affected,” Kumba said, adding that it “would potentially not be able to access approximately 33 percent of the Sishen reserve”.
Kumba wanted to start preparing the affected area for mining within six months to replace depleted reserves within the existing pit, Schoeman said. - Bloomberg