Malawi mine halts uranium production

Mike Mlombwa, president of the Indigenous Business Association of Malawi, cited concerns that the mine's temporary closure could hinder Malawi's export growth.

Malawi mine halts uranium production

World Bulletin / News Desk

A uranium mine in Malawi run by an Australia-based firm has stopped producing and supplying uranium to the global market, citing a deterioration of prices.

"On May 21, uranium production ceased at the Kayelekera Mine. The operation will now cease supplying the global uranium market, resulting in a reduction in global supply for the foreseeable future," John Borshoff, managing director of Paladin Energy Ltd, told Anadolu Agency.

The mine employs 194 Malawians and 27 expatriates.

Borshoff directly attributed the decision to the continuing deterioration of global uranium prices.

The Malawi government granted Paladin a 15-year mining license in April 2007.

Construction of the mine began in June 2007. The project was completed in April 2009.

Borshoff said the company remained committed to maintaining the mine and its infrastructure at Kayelekera in good working condition in hopes of resuming production "when market conditions make it possible to do so profitably."

"The development also means that Paladin Africa will commence placing the Kayelekera Mine on care and maintenance aimed at preserving a large part of the uranium resources of the deposit for future production," he added.

Mike Mlombwa, president of the Indigenous Business Association of Malawi, cited concerns that the mine's temporary closure could hinder Malawi's export growth in 2014 and consequently lower its GDP growth rate.

"Malawi is too dependent on tobacco. The uranium mine gave most of us hope that our exports would grow and local businesses would thrive with the inflow of foreign currency," he told AA.

"But it seems this is not the case," he added. "Our exports will fall again this year unless the mine is opened soon."

Last Mod: 29 Mayıs 2014, 10:11
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