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SA mining regulator accepts West Wits’ application for Witwatersrand Basin project

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Global Mining Review,

West Wits Mining has taken a crucial step in its transformation to the ranks of the junior gold producers, with the ASX announcement that the South African mining regulator has officially accepted its mining rights application for the Witwatersrand Basin project (WBP).

West Wits Investor Relations Manager Simon Whyte says: “Having the regulator accept our application is an important piece of the production jigsaw for West Wits’ WBP operations.

“Subject to final approval, it means mining operations at WBP can be scaled up significantly at several sites concurrently, with the first half of calendar 2019 the likely start date for the ramping up of production towards full-scale mining.

“In the meantime, West Wits will focus on expanding the resource size to comply with the Australasian Code for Reporting of Exploration Results, Mineral Resources and Ore Reserves (JORC Code) and starting mining operations on the Main and South Central and Kimberley West open pits in anticipation of securing regulatory approval for the two mining permits submitted in April.”

Whyte says securing mining rights in South Africa is a rigorous process, with the regulator enforcing tough environmental standards and evidence of ongoing rehabilitation, as well as being able to demonstrate the company consulted widely with numerous stakeholders to ensure the project has widespread support.

“West Wits has clearly demonstrated its environmental bona fides via the rehabilitation work at pits 1 and 2 at the Kimberley Central open pit, as well as having a management team that has been highly proactive in engaging with local communities.”

The regulator’s decision to accept the application – an important regulatory hurdle in itself – comes at an important junction for the South African mining industry.

“West Wits observes that the investment climate for foreign investors in the mining sector has improved, with the new administration of President Cyril Ramaphos adopting a business-focused strategy, so we are well positioned to take advantage of the positive business sentiment that rightly seeks to balance the interests of all stakeholders,” he says.

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African mining news Gold mining news Opencast mine news