Ishemunyoro Chingwere Business Reporter
A MINING start-up, Sullivan Enterprise, is preparing to splurge an initial US$100 000 in exploratory work for brownfield copper deposits near Chinhoyi in Mashonaland West after winning a High Court battle over the claims.
In an interview with this publication the company’s director, Patrick Mukwindidza, said the firm had initially managed to secure an investor from Australia but the funder pulled out after the project was encumbered by a legal wrangle.
With the court processes now over and Sullivan having won their tittle to the claims, Mr Mukwindidza said the firm will, in the short term, roll out an exploration programme up to “decision to mine stage” and then use the same results to attract investment.
He said the firm is looking forward to start mine construction and subsequent production next year.
“We intend to potentially start mine construction and production in the next year,” Mr Mukwindidza told The Herald Finance & Business from his base in Australia.
“ . . . we intend to re-start exploration work, which has been on hold for the past 18 months. We have enough resources to carry out the exploration up to decision to mine stage where we are confident we can use the results to attract capital.
“Most of us (Sullivan Enterprise shareholders) have experience in international capital markets and I am confident that we can bring jobs to Mash West if we are given the opportunity to do our work without interference.
“So the initial exploration is for only the oxide ore and later more expensive exploration will be required for the deeper sulphide ore, but that is down the (priority) line and for the initial phase we are looking at around US$100 000.
He explained that the claims are brownfield having been partially exploited in the late 1960s and that there are some outcrops as well.
Market watchers regard copper as the bellwether metal as it measures the rate of industrialisation of an economy due to its use in the house construction industry.
Expectations are that it will strengthen in the medium to long-term due to its use in the electrical vehicle market where the world looks to be migrating to.
Copper is one of the key components in the charge stations for electrical vehicles and is also used in storage batteries together with lithium and cobalt.