Consolidated Tin to launch new mine

Tin is an industry that's becoming increasingly vital to modern life.

Currently the tin sector is undergoing rapid change as manufacturers increasingly replace lead with tin, and a small group of Australian-based companies are at the helm. 

Consolidated Tin Mines announced this week its Mt Garnet project is on track to launch into production at the end of 2014, delivering a positive independent pre-feasibility study.

Chairman and managing director Ralph De Lacey said construction will begin at the Mt Garnet site, located near Cairns in Northern Queensland, early next year, initially requiring about 50 to 60 workers, The Cairns Post reports.

De Lacey said the mine will employ about 120 workers from the local area to operate the mine.

He explained that existing infrastructure and near surface ore will keep capital and operating costs to a minimum.

“The PFS has confirmed that we have the opportunity to develop a substantial and profitable tin mining project,” De Lacey said.

"The PFS results confirm the potential for a project with a production profile of one million tonnes per annum for a period of nine years or greater.”

According to the study it will cost $76 million to develop the open cut mine which is forecast to produce an average of 2944 tonnes of tin concentrate per annum.

"Consolidated Tin remains on-track to become a significant and profitable Australian tin producer," the report said.

The PFS also highlights a number of opportunities for financial improvement including “further design optimisation of mining and processing stages,” the company said.

The board has approved the initiation of the Definitive Feasibility Stage for Mt Garnet, commencing with the Gillian project.

"It is anticipated that Gillian will provide the mill feed for the first three years of mining," he said.

De Lacey said further evaluation work will be done at its Pinnacles and Windermere sites.

"Discussions are well advanced with our major shareholder, Snow Peak, to finalise a binding agreement to ensure that full asset value is realised for all stakeholders, with the aim of achieving tin production by end of 2014."

Australia’s other tin mine Metals X's Renison mine, located in Tasmania, contains about 85 per cent of Australia’s known tin.

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