AfriTin suspends mining in Namibia, continues processing

31st March 2020 By: Marleny Arnoldi - Deputy Editor Online

AfriTin suspends mining in Namibia, continues processing

AfriTin's Uis tin mine, in Namibia

Aim-listed AfriTin has partly suspended activity at its Uis mine, in Namibia, following the country’s declaration of a partial lockdown from March 27 to April 16.

In Namibia’s legislation, mining operations are categorised as critical economic services and are able to continue minimum operational activity, including critical maintenance work.

The Uis tin mine will therefore stop mining from its openpit, but will continue feeding the processing plant from the run-of-mine stockpile during the lockdown period.

AfriTin says it has more than two months’ worth of production on its stockpile.

As part of a debottlenecking exercise of the processing plant announced in February, the company scheduled a plant shutdown to implement the required modifications. These activities will continue under the current restrictions, although the risk of supply chain disruptions may impact on the scope and timing of the plant shutdown. 

Further, AfriTin plans to export its next shipment of tin concentrate from Walvis Bay, in Namibia, some time in mid-April.

“These are unprecedented times for both the mining sector and the world as a whole. The health and safety of our employees and communities is a main focus and the company is following all World Health Organisation and Namibian national health guidelines to ensure this remains the case. 

"We will operate minimal mining and processing activity. I also take comfort in the fact that the mine is isolated, with very little movement of people through the area.

"Having said this, we are taking no chances and are ensuring the strictest hygiene and social distancing levels across the business and continue monitoring all of our employees for any symptoms of the virus,” says CEO Anthony Viljoen.