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Nevsun reverses course on cut-back to extend Bisha's mine life


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Nevsun reverses course on cut-back to extend Bisha's mine life

Nevsun Resources Ltd. plans to extend the life of the Bisha copper-zinc mine in Eritrea through 2022 with an open pit cut-back it had previously ruled out.

In August 2017, Nevsun reduced Bisha's mine life after it dropped a plan to access additional ore with a large open pit cut-back.

But, in part because of higher metal prices and throughput at the Bisha site, Nevsun is aiming to bring 3.3 million tonnes of that ore back into its mining plans.

The move adds about 470 million pounds of zinc and 52 million pounds of copper to production through the end of 2022, with additional capital costs pegged at US$39.7 million.

Nevsun said the open pit extension will give it more time to consider underground development plans for the Asheli and Harena deposits on the Bisha property.

Bisha, 60% owned by Nevsun and 40% owned by Eritrean National Mining Corp., is Nevsun's only operating mine.

The company anticipates 2018 production of 20 million to 30 million pounds of copper and 210 million to 240 million pounds of zinc.

Meanwhile, Nevsun continues to face a possible takeover.

Lundin Mining Corp. and Euro Sun Mining Inc. jointly offered C$1.5 billion for Nevsun in a late April bid that Nevsun rejected. The deal would have involved Lundin getting Nevsun's Timok copper project in Serbia and Euro Sun ending up with Nevsun's Eritrean assets.