The Zambian ministry of mines and mineral development has reinstated Jubilee Metals’ mining licence for the Kabwe lead, zinc and vanadium project. Photo: Supplied
JOHANNESBURG - The Zambian ministry of mines and mineral development has reinstated Jubilee Metals’ mining licence for the Kabwe lead, zinc and vanadium project in the country it jointly operates with the UK- headquartered BMR Group, the company said yesterday.

The reinstatement paves the way for Jubilee to commence its joint execution of the project in partnership with BMR Group.

Jubilee chief executive Leon Coetzer said: “We welcome this decision by the Minister of Mines and Mineral Development of Zambia, which recognises the work already performed on the project and the advanced state of the project’s execution readiness,” said Coetzer.

The licence was reinstated with immediate effect, but remains subject to conditions specified by the authorities.

Jubilee said the conditions were set to ensure the execution of the project was advanced without delay. These include that plant construction start within three months of the reinstatement of the licence with commissioning starting by September 30 and the first production due by December 30.

Last October, the two companies announced plans to form a joint venture to extract zinc, lead, and vanadium from around 6.4million tons of historical surface deposits at the Kabwe project in Zambia.

The project hit a stumbling block following a termination letter for its mining licence in December.

At the time, BMR chairperson Alex Borrelli, said: “We had understood that all mining companies in Zambia had received the default notice and we had responded accordingly.

“We will now pursue all avenues to rectify this situation as soon as possible and will issue a further announcement when we have further news.”

The suspension letter came a day after Jubilee said it had completed its due diligence at Kabwe and elected to exercise its option to earn 40percent interest.

Coetzeer said at the time the suspension was totally unexpected and “Jubilee was not made aware of any potential challenge to the mining right”.

File picture: Reuters.

Suspended

Shares in BMR were suspended at BMR’s request earlier this year after receiving a letter from the Zambian authorities terminating its mining right for the Kabwe lead, zinc and vanadium project in the country.

Jubilee’s name was changed from Jubilee Platinum to Jubilee Metals in December to better reflect the company’s increasingly wider focus.

Jubilee operates the Dilokong Chrome Mine Platinum and Chrome Tailings Operation in Limpopo.

In the six months to December 2017, revenue was up by 23.51percent to R105.80million from R86.80m in 2016.

Shares in Jubilee rose 11.36percent on the JSE yesterday to close at 49cents.

- BUSINESS REPORT