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Low CAPEX mine access at Khemisset

Published by , Editor
Global Mining Review,

Emmerson Plc, a potash development company, is pleased to announce that it has finalised the Feasibility Study components for the mine ac-cess design and costing for its Khemisset Potash Project in Northern Morocco.

The project is advantaged by industry leading capital costs and bottom quartile all-in delivered cost to customer, yielding economic metrics including an average annual life of mine EBITDA of US$236 million and a post-tax NPV10 of US$1.14 billion.


Scoping Study development approach confirmed with the mining horizon proposed to be accessed by twin declines constructed using underground mining machinery which will later be used in mining production

  • Direct capital cost estimate of mine access component of approximately US$34.1 million including a 21.7% contingency, a slight reduction on the Scoping Study estimate of US$34.7 million.
  • This cost forecast places Khemisset in the lowest 10% for mine access cost for potash developments globally.
  • Design and estimate completed by independent engineering group, Golder Associates, according to Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (AusIMM) guidelines for capital cost estimates.
  • Independent engineering group, Golder Associates, according to AusIMM guidelines for capital cost estimates.

Hayden Locke, CEO of Emmerson, commented: “A detailed trade-off study was completed to select the preferred site location and considered multiple variables including several relating to optimising the decline construction. One of the key aspects was the overall development timeline of the decline, which is now 14 months, to ensure it was not a critical path item and had sufficient buffer within the overall development schedule.

“To have improved both cost and timeline forecasts for mine access development from our Scoping Study phase gives us further confidence that the forthcoming Khemisset Feasibility Study will demonstrate a world class, low CAPEX, high margin potash project.

“This is the fourth completed workstream item from the ongoing Feasibility Study, which continues to progress well and is on schedule for final release during 1H20.”

Summary Overview

Golder, which was appointed by the company to manage the delivery of its Feasibility Study, has completed design and cost estimates for decline access at Khemisset. Designs and estimates have been prepared in line with guidelines provided by AusIMM. The total costs of US$34.1 million, including contingency, is a slight reduction on the Scoping Study estimate and represents a 95% reduction in capital cost when compared against typical Canadian peers.

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