Monday 25 May 2020

Saudi Maaden officials ink deal with Outotec and L&T executives.

Outotec-L&T to build world's largest gold mine in Saudi

RIYADH, May 2, 2019

Saudi Arabian Mining Company (Ma'aden) said it has awarded an engineering, procurement and construction contract to a consortium of Finnish group Outotec and Indian engineering giant Larsen & Toubro (L&T) for developing the world's largest gold mine that produces an average of 250,000 ounces of gold per year over the mine's original life span.

The Mansourah & Massarah mines and processing plant project will come up in the Central Arabian gold region and will be capable of processing up to four million tonnes of ore per annum, said the statement from Maaden.

The project is being developed by Ma’aden Gold and Base Metal Company (MGBM), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Maaden.

According to the Saudi group, the total investment in the mine is likely to reach SR3.3 billion ($880 million) and the production is likely to begin in 2022.

Once competed, MGBM will manage production and sale of gold, copper, silver, and zinc, with gold accounting for the biggest business segment.

The project represents a major step for Ma’aden not only because they are the largest gold mines, but also because of the technical challenges that accompany the treatment of this type of gold ore, it added.

The Finnish group said its share of the project is over €140 million. The order is almost evenly shared between the reporting segments and will be booked into Outotec's second quarter 2019 order intake, stated Outotec.

A major player in the construction and engineering sector, L&T said the project, a first-of-its-kind within Saudi Arabia, is being developed based on the latest Pressure Oxidation Technology (POX).

The Saudi EPC order for gold processing plant was secured after stiff global competition and is the largest single EPC order for the metallurgical business in the international market, said the top Indian construction group.

Its scope of the work includes design, engineering, procurement, installation, construction and commissioning of various sub units of the process plant and associated infrastructure works.

As per the deal, the consortium of Outotec and Larsen & Toubro will provide engineering, procurement and construction services for the construction of a greenfield mineral concentrator and gold processing plant in Saudi Arabia.

Once completed, the treatment plant will be able to process up to 4 million tonnes per year of thermal materials found in mineral deposits - the first time this type of gold ore has been processed in the Middle East.

Unveiling the mega project, Maaden CEO Darren Davisden said: "We are proud of this project, which was discovered through the activities of the Ma'aden exploration team, which carries out extensive mining exploration programs, which was announced earlier this year."

"This project is an important element of our strategy to increase our gold production to one million ounces a year and our continued growth in the Kingdom will provide hundreds of direct and indirect jobs in the Saudi economy and contribute to the development of communities around our business areas," he stated.

"Sustainability is a key element of this project, as in other Ma'aden investments. This project will be the first in the kingdom to use solar energy as a source of energy. The project will also benefit from treated wastewater for miners via a 430-km-long pipeline constructed by Ma'aden from Taif to the remote and water-scarce area of the mines," he added.

Ma'aden is the champion of the Saudi Arabian mining industry, and now internationally recognised mining company with global presence.

The company is also managing six gold mines in the western part of the kingdom, including the Duwehi mine, which began commercial production in 2017 with around 275,000 oz in 2018.

Ma'aden plans to spend about SR295 million ($67 million) on the exploration programme. The accelerated minefield, which was launched at the beginning of 2019, represents a threefold increase in Maaden's investment commitment in previous years. It aims to shorten the time required to transfer new discoveries to the development stage.

On the contract win, Outotec CEO Markku Teräsvasara said: "We are extremely pleased with this significant order and continued cooperation with Ma'aden that is growing to be a global mining company. Our previous deliveries have included grinding, flotation and filtering technologies as well as alumina calcination technology, and three sulfuric acid plants."

"Our proven technologies and services enable them to get the best value from their resources and build sustainable operations," he stated.

The scope of work includes basic and detail engineering, procurement and delivery of process equipment, commissioning, start-up assistance and training services. The new gold processing plant is due to be completed in 2022.-TradeArabia News Service


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