Tag Archives: Hidden Valley

Wafi-Gulpu mine to dump toxic tailings in the ocean

Tailings placement site identified

Cedric Patjole | Loop PNG | December 26, 2017

The Huon Gulf deep sea trenches have been identified as a suitable location for deep sea tailings placement [toxic waste dumping] from the Wafi-Golpu Project [mine].

The Wafi-Golpu Joint Venture (WGJV) presented during the PNG Mining and Petroleum Conference that the Huon Gulf deep sea trench was highly suitable.

Wafi-Golpu Joint Venture executive project director, Bryan Bailie, said in the presentation that local rivers, including the Markham, discharged 60 million tons per annum of natural sediment into the Markham Canyon, which reports to the New Britain Trench which is 9000 metres deep.

He said it was a highly disturbed environment, with regular purging of sediments through mass flow events and has low bio accumulated risk.

Huon Gulf is located on the northern coast of PNG, occupied by Morobe Province.

Huon Gulf offers spectacular scenery, accessible diving spots and a range of climates from sub-alpine and alpine to tropical.

Meanwhile, the Joint venture says a stable legislative and fiscal regime is critical to the development of the Wafi-Golpu Mine Project.

The component is among five key areas which the Joint Venture highlighted and include:

  • The completion of the updated feasibility study, and Environmental Impact Statement;
  • Completion of the permitting and approval by the Harmony and Newcrest boards;
  • Sustained landowner and community support; and
  • Ongoing close coordination between WGJV and Government agencies
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Filed under Environmental impact, Papua New Guinea

Upgrades to Harmony mine processing infrastructure complete ahead of schedule

Phila Mzamo | Inside Mining | November 30, 2017

Harmony Gold Mining’s planned shutdown at its Hidden Valley mine in Papua New Guinea (PNG) has been completed two weeks ahead of schedule and processing of ore recommenced mid November, according to the miner.

At the 2017 Mining and Petroleum Conference and Trade Fair in Papua New Guinea, the General Manager at Hidden Valley, Gary Davies, noted that processing operations at the mine started on 15 November 2017, following the planned four-month plant shutdown.

The company said more than 65% of the planned initial capital investment in the stage 5 and 6 cutback has been incurred to date and the project is progressing ahead of schedule and on budget, all whilst maintaining the highest safety standards.

“Mining at the Stage 5 cutback is a month ahead of schedule and on budget, with an annualised mining rate of 28 million tonnes per annum achieved in October 2017.

“It is expected that commercial levels of production will be achieved in the June quarter 2018, as per plan.”

Davies highlighted at the conference that safety at the mine is industry leading, with a lost-time injury rate during the past twelve months of 0.2 per million hours worked and the last lost-time injury recorded in April 2017.

“The Hidden Valley team showcases responsible mining – communities benefit, employees benefit and the mine is well on track to deliver annual steady state gold production of 180 000oz at an all-in sustaining cost of less than US$950/oz during FY19”, said Peter Steenkamp, chief executive officer of Harmony.

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Filed under Financial returns, Papua New Guinea

Hidden Valley four month shut down ‘to end soon’

Harmony Gold haemorrhage at Hidden Valley

David McKay | Mining Mx | November 7, 2017

“This has been planned and communicated since we acquired and announced the investment plan in Hidden Valley,” said Lauren Fourie, a spokeswoman for Harmony Gold.

“The four month plant stoppage was due to the ore gap caused by delaying the stage 5 and 6 investment – a decision made when we still held Hidden Valley 50:50 with Newcrest.”

“The ore gap allowed us to do upgrade and maintenance work on the plant and crusher. But this was always planned for,” she said.

“Hidden Valley will start processing again at the end of November. The investment plan is on budget and on schedule.”

Harmony Gold bought Newcrest’s stake in the mine for $1 in 2016 with a view to developing it for $180m.

The acquisition of Newcrest’s 50% stake in Hidden Valley was the first substantive decision of Harmony CEO, Peter Steenkamp since his appointment in November 2015, along with a plan to high grade Kusasalethu and reduce its life of mine from 25 years to six.

Since then, however, it has become clear that Harmony is a company in significant transition.

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Harmony is over its near-death experience

Harmony Gold CEO Peter Steenkamp. Picture: FREDDY MAVUNDA

Allan Seccombe | Business Day | 20 October 2017

Harmony Gold’s recovery from a “near-death experience” a few years ago was further evidenced by its bold R4.1bn purchase of a suite of gold and uranium assets from AngloGold Ashanti and positioning the company to make a decision on what to do with the Golpu copper and gold project in Papua New Guinea.

Harmony CEO Peter Steenkamp hailed the purchase of the profitable Moab Khotsong mine and its sister Great Noligwa mine, which was mothballed, along with 70-million tonnes of gold-carrying tailings and the entire Nufcor — SA’s only uranium calcining operation, which treats material from Moab and third parties.

Nufcor is SA’s only uranium calcining operation, which treats material from Moab and third parties.

“When I got the job two years ago, Harmony was in very big trouble. It had very high levels of debt of R5bn, half its market capitalisation.

“It had a near-death experience, but since then we’ve stabilised our production at 1-million ounces a year, a sustainable level, we’ve done good acquisitions at Hidden Valley in Papua New Guinea and now these assets from AngloGold,” Steenkamp said.

Analysts said Harmony was paying a full price for the AngloGold assets, including Nufcor, which Steenkamp said he doubted Harmony would keep considering the prevailing low uranium price of about $20 per pound.

“There is lots of value that can be unlocked, but this will require capital and a bit more risk in terms of mining, as a lot of this upside will come from mining pillars not in the AngloGold plan,” said Nedbank mining analyst Arnold van Graan.

“Pillar mining obviously carries a higher safety risk, but Harmony is expert in pillar mining. From the market’s perspective though, there is probably a perception that the risk increases,” Van Graan said.

While the purchase of the cash-generative Moab puts Harmony in a better position when it comes to deciding on Golpu, Steenkamp sounded an unusually noncommittal note when referring to a great asset and one for which a final feasibility study is under way and due for completion in 2018.

“If we have to put 50% of the capital in we will never have that kind of money.

“If the Papua New Guinea government takes their 30% of Golpu, then we can have a look at what we have.

“Everyone sees Golpu as a threat for Harmony, but it’s not. It’s an opportunity. We could sell right out of Golpu, or we could remain partially in the project or keep our full stake,” Steenkamp said.

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K18.7 billion gold, copper mine to begin work soon

Malum Nalu | The National aka The Loggers Times | September 8, 2017
The US$6 billion (about K18.7 billion) Wafi gold and copper mine in Morobe will begin work this year, says Deputy Prime Minister and Treasurer Charles Abel.
Wafi is one of the major resource projects that the ministerial economic committee, through the new national energy authority, will drive in the 25-point 100-day plan,  others being the PNG LNG Project, Papua LNG Project and Western LNG.
“Early works (are set to begin) on the Wafi-Golpu US$6 billion gold and copper project over in Morobe,” Abel told NBC Talkback Radio yesterday.
“All they want is some assurance around fiscal stability that there’s to be no sudden changes to the fiscal regime.
“They are not asking for any concession.
“They just want to know that this is the regime and it will not be changing dramatically.
“They will begin early works this year.
“That early works includes digging down so that they can drive in under that ore body because it’s a block-cut mine where you cut from underneath.
“That’s going to involve spending of significant amounts of money.
“They’re just looking for some assurance.
“That money will be spent to create jobs and economic activity; going forward, a lot of revenue for the country also.”
Abel said the 100-day plan included bringing Wafi and other major resource projects online.
“There are a number of projects that we’ve been talking about for some time now,” he said.
“I’m just trying to focus down on them to get them across the line, stimulate investment, bring in jobs and create foreign exchange.
“They are private sector-driven projects, but they are also concessional financing and aid-type projects.
“We’ll run through and see which are the easy-win projects that we can bring across the line.”

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Landowners Plan To Block Hidden Valley Mine Road

Bradley Mariori | Post Courier | September 5, 2017

Landowners of Hidden Valley in Bulolo District, Morobe Province are planning to block off roads leading to the mine site today.

This is in response to what they termed as the unfavourable response to their demands which they presented in a petition last Thursday.

The landowners walked out of the meeting with the mining company and decided to take action to get the attention of the government.

The petition by the landowners lapsed on 26th August.

Their demand was for the mining company to review all contracts and give landowner companies greater opportunities to participate in contracts and other spin off benefits to come off from the mine development.

The contracts include labor hire, transport hire, bus services, fuel cartage, general cargo, waste management, environment monitoring and rehabilitation, travel agency, boiler shop contract, crusher contract, camp services and maintenance, heavy equipment (assembling and dismantling), security, catering services, and all contracts given to non landowners including foreign companies be given direct to landowner companies

Landowner spokesman, Andrew Kupa of Seproku Limited said they walked out of the meeting with Harmony Mine because their demands were not met.

“We have given them 14 days to respond to our demands and they have not responded in our favor or responded according to the memorandum of agreement we signed,” Mr Kupa said.

“It will be a peaceful demonstration by blocking the road and we will get those people in higher authorities to come down and address these issues.

“In the last seven years, we have not been benefiting from NKW which Harmony Gold said is a landowner company.

“Contracts coming to the little landowner companies are the way to go about and not NKW as an umbrella company which does not benefit us.

“It’s a matter of giving us contracts and everything will go back to normal,” said Mr Kupa.

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Harmony Gold achieves fatality free quarter in SA and Papua New Guinea

Harmony Gold Mining’s Kusasalethu mine in South Africa

If a fatality free quarter is a ‘milestone’, how many deaths are normally recorded?

Harmony Gold Mining has announced that its South African and Papua New Guinean operations achieved a milestone fatality free quarter during the June 2017 quarter.

Mining Review Africa | 14 July 2017

Harmony gold’s gold production for the 30 June 2017 financial year is estimated to be 1.088 million oz, which exceeds production guidance of 1.05 million oz. Underground recovered grade increased for a fifth consecutive year to 5.07 g/t.

“We will continue to focus on increasing cash margins through safe, predictable and profitable production” says Peter Steenkamp, CEO of Harmony.

Harmony will announce its operating and financial results for the year ended 30 June, 2017 on Thursday 17 August 2017, during a live presentation at the Hilton Hotel, Sandton, at 09h00 South African time.

In October last year Harmony Gold completed the acquisition of Hidden Valley mine in Papua New Guinea.

The Hidden Valley mine is an open pit gold and silver mine, jointly owned and managed as part of the joint venture between Harmony and Newcrest Mining.

The mine is situated in the highly prospective area of the Morobe province in Papua New Guinea, some 210 km northwest of Port Moresby.

The major gold and silver deposits of the Morobe goldfield and Hidden Valley are hosted in the Wau Graben.

The Hidden Valley-Kaveroi and Hamata pits, located approximately 6 km apart, are in operation.

Ore mined is also treated at the Hidden Valley processing plant.

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