Botswana is one of Africa’s major nickel producers, along with Zimbabwe and South Africa, producing 27 400 t of nickel in 2003 compared to 23,896 t in 2002. Copper production in 2003 equalled 24,289 t compared to 21,590 t in 2002.

Botswana’s only major base metal mine, the Selibwi Phikwe Copper – Nickel – Cobalt mine struggled with poor metal prices, lowering grade and depth of operations in 1999. As a result, the mine has become one of the highest cost producers of nickel in the world. Anglo American (30%), the Botswana government (30%) own the mine, operated by Bamangwato Concessions Limited (BCL). Selebi-Phikwe is the centre of Botswana’s copper-nickel-cobalt mining industry. The mine consists of four mining centers: Phikwe Central, South East Extension, Selebi North and Selebi. It is one of the largest private sector employers with over 4850 employees. Some 3.5 Mt ore grading 0.62% nickel and 0.71% copper is produced per year, resulting in 40 000t of copper-nickel matte that is produced for refining in Zimbabwe and Norway.

Production of copper metal by BCL was 13% higher at 24,289 t in 2003, and nickel output rose by 15% to 27,400 t. Exports of copper-nickel-cobalt by BCL were worth P695 million in 2003, up 44% on the preceding year, and an increase in US dollar terms of 84% to US$140 million, the highest level for over five years.

The Tati Nickel Mining company near Francistown is owned by Anglo American (43%), Canadian Lionore Mining International (41%) and the Botswana government (15%). Tati has two operating mines, Selkirk and Phoenix, with production earmarked to double. As a result, the company intends producing approximately 320 000 t of nickel concentrate/year grading at about 5.5%. The orebody at Selkirk (located 15 km south of Phoenix), is described as a shallow plunging zone of massive sulphide mineralisation, about 200 m long, 100 m wide and up to 25 m thick. The down-plunge limit of the known massive sulphide orebody is located 150 m below surface. Tati resources have been estimated at 170 million tonnes at a nickel grade of 0.29% and a copper grade of 0.20% (Reserves: 48 Mt at 0.59% nickel and 0.34% copper). At Tati, LionOre completed the commissioning of a US$66 million expansion project at the Phoenix underground mine in 2003 to upgrade ore throughput and construct an on-site wet concentrate treatment facility.

Organisations (2)
Bamangwato Concessions Limited, Tati Nickel Mining Company (Pty) Ltd :[ Add More ]

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Participating Organisations
Anglo American plc

The tranquil ambience of 5 Mountains Lodge is perfect for Conferences, Business Meetings and Team Building Sessions. The Dining Room can seat up to 20 delegates in U shape, 25 in Classroom shape and 30 in Cinema shape. The Boardroom seats up to 10 delegates and is ideal for business meetings and getaways from the office environment, as well as for private dining.

LionOre Mining International Limited

Lionore has a 41.65% in the Tati Nickel Mining company that operates the Selkirk and Phoenix copper – nickel – cobalt mines in eastern Botswana.

Shaun Bakamoso

Greetings. I'm Shaun Bakamoso, and I'm thrilled to be your guide through the dynamic world of business news in South Africa here at mbendi.co.za. With a passion for staying informed and a keen interest in the ever-evolving landscape of business, I've dedicated myself to providing you with timely, insightful, and comprehensive coverage of the latest developments impacting the South African economy. bakamoso@gmail.com / Instagram