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De Beers to Shut Voorspoed Mine

Jul 31, 2018 10:12 AM   By Rapaport News
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De Beers will close its Voorspoed mine in South Africa, after an extensive search failed to turn up a suitable buyer, it said Tuesday.

The company’s South Africa business, De Beers Consolidated Mines (DBCM), began looking for a buyer for the asset last year, after determining that a lower-cost operator would have a better chance of maximizing its value.

“We were committed to ensuring that any potential future operator would not only have the required technical and financial capability, but also values that are aligned with those of DBCM,” said Phillip Barton, CEO of DBCM.

“Unfortunately, we have not been able to identify a bidder that met the necessary criteria, and so we have reluctantly taken the decision to close the operation in a responsible manner, as it is no longer economically viable for DBCM to operate the mine,” he continued.

While De Beers has stated its intention to close the mine, the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) asked the miner to manage the closure alongside a separate process during which the DMR will conduct a search for a potential operator to acquire and run the mine.

The search will run from August 1 to 31. Failing an appropriate offer, the mine, which is in Kroonstad, Free State, will close by the end of the year.

Voorspoed is one of the miner’s two South African projects. The second, Venetia mine, is located in Limpopo Province. The company has recently invested $2 billion to transition that asset to an underground mining venture, which will extend its operating life into the 2040s.
Tags: DBCM, De Beers, De Beers Consolidated Mines, Department of Mineral Resources, DM, Phillip Barton, Rapaport News, Venetia mine, Voorspoed, Voorspoed mine
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