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DMCI Mining plans to restart Berong nickel mine in the Philippines

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DMCI Mining plans to restart Berong nickel mine in the Philippines

London — DMCI Mining plans to restart mining this year at its Berong nickel project in the Philippine province of Palawan after the lifting of a suspension order by the country's environment and natural resources authorities last November.

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DMCI president Cesar Simbulan also said 2019 would remain tough for the nickel miner as it will be shipping mostly lower-grade ore.

DMCI has nearly depleted selling higher-grade ore inventory in the past two years after Manila suspended Berong Nickel in mid-2016 and closed DMCI's second nickel operation Zambales Diversified Metals over environmental violations in Feb 2017.

DMCI shipped 643,000 wmt of nickel ore in 2018, up 22% from 2017. The average nickel grade of the shipments rose 13% to 1.7%.

The average grade of nickel ore shipments this year will be around 1.57%.

According to the Philippine Mines and Geosciences Bureau, Berong Nickel's output was 867,817 wmt in 2015, then 341,190 wmt in 2016.

-- Winnie Lee, newsdesk@spglobal.com

-- Edited by Dan Lalor, daniel.lalor@spglobal.com