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28/05/2024
Mining News

Zijin Mining Group sets ambitious goals for copper production in Serbia

The President of Zijin Mining Group‘s Board of Directors, Chen Jinhe, announced today that significant progress has been made in addressing 90% of the environmental challenges inherited from the Bor and Majdanpek mines. Looking ahead, the aim is to transform the Bor mining basin into the largest within the corporation across Europe within the next five years.

“Our objective for the upcoming five-year period is to position Serbia as the leading modern copper mining hub in Europe. Given that our primary operations are situated in Bor and Majdanpek, achieving this milestone will profoundly impact the economic and social landscape of the Bor District,” Jinhe highlighted. Last September, Zijin Mining Group, in collaboration with the Minister of Mining and Energy, Dubravka Đedović Handanović, inked a memorandum signaling the corporation’s commitment to invest $3.8 billion in Serbia. However, Jinhe hinted that the actual investments may surpass this figure.

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“Our future investments will primarily focus on advancing underground copper and gold mining ventures. With estimated copper reserves of around 20 million tons and gold reserves ranging between 700 to 800 tons, our strategic vision includes ramping up the annual production capacity of our Serbian projects to 450,000 tons of copper and 10 tons of gold, effectively positioning Serbia as Europe’s premier copper producer,” Jinhe elaborated.

Despite substantial progress, Jinhe identified challenges hindering further advancements, including inadequate infrastructure, limited support from local communities, and bureaucratic delays in securing government permits. “The shortage of electricity remains a significant obstacle to production,” Jinhe remarked during discussions with Serbian reporters visiting China to acquaint themselves with Zijin Mining Group’s modern and eco-friendly mining practices.

Jinhe underscored their commitment to sustainability, stating that their immediate focus involves reducing carbon emissions across all mining operations, thereby promoting environmentally responsible practices. Additionally, Jinhe revealed ongoing trials of electric trucks within their Chinese operations, hinting at plans to introduce similar eco-friendly initiatives in Serbian mines pending successful outcomes. Last year, Zijin reported significant production figures in Serbia, with 240,000 tons of copper and 7.5 tons of gold, marking the successful completion of the initial phase of construction, as reported by Tanjug.

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