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PNG's Ramu NiCo exceeds production targets

THE Ramu nickel/cobalt mine in Madang exceeded production targets for the March quarter, benefiting from rising global cobalt prices, an official says.
Cobalt prices have doubled in the past six months.
Highlands Pacific, one of the joint venture partners in Ramu, said the mine had achieved total production of 7884 tonnes of nickel in concentrate and 755 tonnes of cobalt in concentrate in the three months to March. This is despite the scheduled maintenance of two of the process plant’s three autoclaves for 12 days each during the period.
Highlands Pacific chief executive Craig Lennon said: “We are delighted to see that Ramu is achieving excellent production outcomes at the same time that we are seeing strong growth in cobalt prices and nickel prices show signs of recovery after an extended period of weakness.
Adjusted for the maintenance shut-downs, the plant was running at an annual production rate of some 34,600 tonnes of nickel and more than 3300 tonnes of cobalt per year.
These exceeded design capacity and demonstrated success of recent initiatives to lift throughput rates.
The increased production was being achieved as global cobalt prices continue to rise, driven by increased use in battery manufacturing....read more on >> Pacific Mining News
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