Sky Chrome Property
IFM has acquired the rights to the adjacent Sky Chrome property and its substantial ore reserves. A new mine will be started there in partnership with the local tribe, the Bapo Ba Mogale, ensuring IFM remains self-sufficient in ore for in excess of 40 years.
Construction of three additional 66MVA smelting furnaces is planned to commence in the near future, together with an additional 700 000 tonnes per annum pelletising and sintering plant and beneficiation plant. This expansion will increase output by 150 percent, from its current 267 000 tons tpa to 665 000 tpa a year.
Electricity Generation Plant (Clean Development Mechanism Project)
In 2008 the Company embarked on the construction of its Clean Development Mechanasim (“CDM”) compliant electricity co-generation plant. IFM aims to generate an average of about 13.7MW, being 11 percent of IFM’s overall electricity requirements, which will reduce costs and allow the Company to achieve 100 percent production capacity (up from the Eskom constrained 90 percent). Furthermore, the project is expected to displace c.144,000 tonnes of CO2 equivalent and qualify for Carbon Emissions Reductions (Carbon Credits). The plant is expected to be commissioned in September 2010.
UG2 Supply agreement
The Company has also entered into an agreement with Rustenburg Platinum Mines Limited (“RPM”) a subsidiary of Anglo Platinum Limited whereby IFM will pay for the construction of a chrome re-treatment plant (“CRP”) to treat the tailings arising from RPM’s UG2 concentrator situated at their Waterval section. The CRP’s primary objective will be to extract chromite from the tailings. The CRP will be constructed and commissioned by an EPCM Contractor and owned, maintained and operated by RPM.
IFM will be entitled to 15,000 tonnes of chromite per month (tpm) at no cost other than the cost of transporting the concentrate to its facilities at Buffelsfontein, which is about 50km from the CRP. The 15,000tpm represents almost 30% of the Company’s current concentrate requirements and the effective cost of the concentrate will be significantly below the Company’s in-house mining cost.
The contract is for ten years from commencement of the project and IFM is entitled to 15,000tpm from the date of commissioning of the CRP. It is estimated that IFM will therefore receive concentrate for a period of nine years. Construction on the CRP is expected to commence in June 2010 and commissioning is expected to follow 12 months later.