Marula advances Tanzanian, South African projects

16th November 2023

By: Marleny Arnoldi

Deputy Editor Online


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As Africa-focused Marula Mining works to expand lithium ore processing capacity at its Blesberg lithium and tantalum project, in South Africa’s Northern Cape province, the company loaded and hauled 18 843 t of stockpile material for beneficiation and sorting during the quarter ended September 30.

This compares with the 14 924 t of material moved and processed in the second quarter.

About 27 800 t of material was processed through the crushing and screening circuit during the quarter under review and a further 10 550 t of material was used for road and drill pad construction.

As of September 30, Marula had 38 630 t of stockpiled material.

 As part of the company’s plans to complete an expansion in the lithium ore processing capacity at Blesberg, the company announced during the quarter that it was completing the acquisition of two sensor-based, X-ray fluorescence (XRF) ore sorting plants for total consideration of R40.6-million, or £1.7-million.

The XRF ore sorters were bought as part of the proposed expanded processing facilities that are to be installed at Blesberg and will initially include a new and expanded crushing and screening circuit, a mica removal vacuum screen and the ore sorters.

The expanded processing plant will be capable of producing up to 5 000 t a month of +20 mm saleable high-grade lithium spodumene product from both the current stockpiled material from the historic mining activities and from the broader development plans of a large-scale hard-rock openpit mining operation.

The acquired XRF ore sorters comprise a Rados SRF100-8 ore sorter with a 30 t/h capacity, which has been acquired from Rados International Technologies for R23-million, or £990 000; and a Tomra COM XRT 1200 ore sorter with a 120 t/h capacity, which has been acquired for R17.6-million, or £750 000, from Q Global Mining.

The XRF ore sorters are scheduled to be commissioned on site at the Blesberg operations during the fourth quarter, with installation work on site already having started.

Meanwhile, the company expects to conclude negotiations with a new long-term offtake partner soon, following the termination of an offtake agreement it had with Southern Jade Resources.

Marula also continues work on a resource drilling exploration programme worth R26-million that it launched during the quarter. The programme is aimed at defining a maiden mineral resource estimate at Blesberg and supporting a larger, longer-term hard rock openpit mining operation.

The company is also doing exploration work for copper in the Dodoma region of central Tanzania on ten primary mining licences, where it is working with local partner Takela Mining Tanzania.

At one site in particular, Kinusi, the company has identified a 1-km-long and 300-m-wide copper mineralised corridor, where Marula plans to commission a large-scale solvent extraction and electrowinning circuit for the production of copper cathode.

Moreover, the company has ten graphite licences located in the Simanjiro district of Tanzania, where it is also working with Takela on advancing a project through to mine development and establishing graphite processing operations.

While is it currently listed on the Aquis Stock Exchange in the UK, the company is considering listing its securities on the Aim market of the LSE, as well as a dual listing of its securities on Kenya’s Nairobi Securities Exchange and the JSE, in South Africa.

Edited by Chanel de Bruyn
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor Online



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