11 Sep Alphamin Bisie Tin Mine Project on track to produce Conflict-free Tin from 2019
Alphamin Resources Corp. hosts North Kivu Minister of Mines in Johannesburg
JOHANNESBURG – 22 August 2017 – Alphamin Resources Corp. (AFM: TSXV, “Alphamin”) is on track to deliver on the commitment to develop the first large commercial tin mine in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo that will produce responsible, developmental, conflict-free tin concentrate, while promoting community development, safety, health and environmentally sound practices. The first production at Alphamin Bisie Tin Mine (“ABM”) is expected in 2019 and the mine will reach steady state production towards the end of 2019. The project is already bringing substantial benefit to local communities and holds promise of attractive returns for investors for many years to come.
Alphamin today hosted a media round table in Johannesburg where senior journalists had the opportunity to engage with the North Kivu Minister of Mines, Electricity, Small & Medium Enterprises, Industry and Hydrocarbons, Minister Professor Anselme Paluku Kitakya, the North Kivu Provincial Director of The Ministry of Mines’ Centre of Evaluation, Expertise and Certification, Dr. Daniel Ngoie Mbayo as well as the senior leadership of Alphamin.
Minister Professor Kitakya expressed his support for the Alphamin Bisie Tin Mine project and the value that the project already brings to the Walikale territory in North Kivu in the Democratic Republic of Congo. He welcomed the prospect of increasing the North Kivu tin production and in the country. “ABM will double the DRC’s exports of tin by 10,000 tons per year,” he states. “The mine holds significant value for the region as it brings local and regional employment while adding to the region’s infrastructure and social well-being. Examples of such value includes the building of the Luuka Primary School at Logu-walikale, substantial upgrade of the region’s roads and the provision of cell phone connectivity to the area. Through the Lowa Alliance, 115 development projects are partially financed by a percentage of the ABM operational expenses,” says Minister Professor Kotayk. He welcomes the diversification of the local economic activity, mining of minerals and regional economic growth the operation holds.
“Alphamin has the best tin orebody in the world, in a commodity with solid future prospects, managed by an experienced team, supported by well capitalised investors, who are astute industry specialists, in an area with abundant resources that is poised for rapid economic growth,” explains Boris Kamstra, CEO of Alphamin. Kamstra explains that progress at the project is on track and the development is about to enter the underground construction of the industrial mine development. “The Bisie tin deposit is one of the largest and most significant tin deposits in the world. Construction activities commenced in Q3 2017 and first production of tin in concentrate is anticipated in Q1 2019 while the mine is anticipated to reach steady state production towards end of 2019,” explains Kamstra.
Kamstra says that unlocking the potential of the mine holds local and international benefit. “Future tin supply is globally uncertain as tin inventories are running low and economically viable tin reserves are being depleted. The International Tin Research Institute (ITRI) has forecast that there is likely to be a global shortfall of tin commencing in 2018,” he explains. There are a limited number of active industrial scale tin mines outside of China and Indonesia and the majority of other new projects face significant technical, financing and other challenges, in addition obtaining the required permits to build new mines remain complex. In explaining the significance of tin mining for global industry, he says that tin mining companies should attract increasing interest from the owners of consumer brands and their manufacturers, who use tin in their products (laptops, mobile phones and cars). “Consumer companies will need to secure future supply. The Bisie tin deposit is one of the largest and most significant tin deposits in the world – providing the ideal foundation to build a premier tin producer on,” states Kamstra.
Alphamin is expected to deliver a significant return to investors through the full range of expected tin prices. Under the updated Feasibility Study the net present value (NPV) of the investment in Bisie amounts to US$402.2 million and the internal rate of return (IRR) is 49.1%. The Feasibility Study is based on a US$17 300 per ton tin price, the current price (14 August 2017) is US$20 300.
The Alphamin operation is the manifestation of what conflict mineral legislation aimed to achieve. Responsible procurement is the order of the day and the normal way of working at the Alphamin Bisie Tin Mine project. “Alphamin is already the largest local employer in the region and adding value to the area through job creation, construction, connectivity and development of economic infrastructure,” says Kamstra.
The Project is already a catalyst for regional economic growth and holds more positive promise for years to come. Alphamin is committed to contributing to the stability and economic activity in North Kivu. “Alphamin, with its Bisie mine, contributes significantly to benefit the community and other stakeholders alike. Local communities strongly support the development of the project, as it will create employment and facilitate the development of supportive infrastructure in North Kivu. Local community support is further enhanced through the Lowa Alliance, a not-for-profit foundation that drives comprehensive and ongoing economic and social development, which is funded by ABM, donations and the local communities,” says Kamstra.
Minister Professor Kitakya recognises the major challenges facing the region including insecurity, inadequate legal and regulatory frameworks, land locked enclaves, inadequate infrastructure, fraud and contraband and declining exchange rates. However, he stresses that a lot is being done to overcome these challenges by working with industrial mining companies like Alphamin. “We created a special committee to support the development of the Alphamin Tin Mine at Bisie, the CAIMB, which includes 27 DRC Government divisions and ministries. We also supported and co-led the anti-fraud investigation and reform of the implementation of the CNLFM/P which focused on eliminating fraud of ABM minerals to maintain integrity of conflict-free supply chains, peaceful migration of ASM miners to legal and viable sites,” says the Minister.
According to the updated Feasibility Study, the responsible development and operation of the Alphamin Bisie tin mine is expected to result in the employment of approximately 700 people during construction, and to create approximately 450 permanent local jobs during operations. “Already the positive impact of Alphamin is leading to vastly improved governance, security, safety and increased economic activity in the Walikale region of North Kivu,” explains Kamstra. “The catalytic nature of Alphamin’s commitment to and investment in the post-conflict region of the eastern DRC will brings synergies with the other humanitarian, stabilisation and development funding and initiatives of the GDRC and multiple donors (including the World Bank, European Union, United States Agency for International Development, the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development and others),” he says.
Alphamin is a proud subscribing participant in the Voluntary Principles on Security & Human Rights, recognizing the importance of the promotion and protection of human rights and the constructive role business and civil society can play in advancing these goals. “Alphamin’s development will fundamentally transform the local economy, social conditions and underlying governance of the Walikale Territory and North Kivu Province,” says Kamstra.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT:
Chief Executive Officer
Alphamin Resources Corp.
Tel: +230 269 4166
Grand Baie, Mauritius
Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its regulation services provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this News Release.
ISSUED ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF ALPHAMIN RESOURCES CORP. BY:
Boris Kamstra, Chief Executive Officer
Tel: +230 269 4166
Grand Baie, Mauritius
MORE INFORMATION ON ALPHAMIN RESOURCES CORP.:
Alphamin is a tin exploration and development company with the vision to be respected in the international tin sector by unleashing the full profit and potential of its world-class tin asset in North Kivu, DRC currently under development.
Alphamin has the vision to become a premier tin producer by:
Leading a world-class, profitable mining company in North Kivu, delivering results for the benefit of all stakeholders and viewed with respect by the communities and Government.
Becoming a profitable tin producer, while continuing with exploration to increase life of mine. ABM intends to operate a profitable tin mine in a safe environment and uplifting the local community. Alphamin is striving to develop the first, low-cost per tonne tin, commercial mine in North Kivu, while at the same time making a marked, positive impact on the communities surrounding the mine. We intend to be a tin mining company that excels at the production of tin and provides leadership for the region in terms of safety, health, environment and community development.
Delivering on the commitment to develop the first large, commercial tin mine in that part of the country – giving Alphamin credibility locally and abroad – and becoming a business transformation reference in the tin mining industry.
Creating value for both shareholders and the community.
Committing, from the date of production, to spend 4% of its in-country operating and administrative expenses on community development. This investment will be governed with representative input from local communities and managed by the Lowa Alliance, a GDRC-regulated not-for-profit foundation. Alphamin will continue to preserve its legal rights to develop Bisie and explore ways to assist artisanal miners to transition from illegal to legal status, conflict-free sites elsewhere in the region.
The community projects, supported by the alliance, being selected following an in-depth survey of the 13 500 households (approximately 80 000 residents) across the 44 communities closest to Bisie. Representative committees will prioritise a range of projects to promote social and economic development to which they, local authorities and potentially external donors, will also contribute. These projects would provide incentives for income beyond illegal artisanal mining while also providing educational and health infrastructure and services like potable water, malaria reduction and treatment and primary health care capacity building.
CONFLICT FREE TIN
Through the initiatives of the global tin industry regarding the trade of conflict minerals in the Great Lakes Region, burden of proof falls primarily on supply chain operators and exporters to prove the direct source of the tin concentrate produced for smelting. That material which is not traceable to its direct source is at risk of being unsaleable or heavily discounted in the open market, since global smelters are under increasing pressure to assure certification and chain of custody to their customers. The Bisie operation will supply conflict-free tin from eastern DRC and the Alphamin operation will be the manifestation of what conflict mineral advocacy and legislation aimed to achieve.
Alphamin’s conflict-free tin concentrate and social initiatives should therefore be of interest to international trading and smelting companies and multinational brands which use tin in their products, including laptops, mobile and smart phones and cars. The complexities of certifying tin concentrates as conflict free also make the product less appealing to armed groups and so reduces the risk of threats to the mine or transporters with the intention to forcefully gain occupation of the mine site or appropriate final product.
Alphamin is a member of the Conflict-Free Sourcing Initiative, a global end-user grouping of companies who develop conflict-free certification standards and protocols, and is also a member of the International Tin Research Institute which is involved in global conflict-free sourcing initiatives.
The operation is planned to deliver on the commitment to develop the first large commercial tin mine in the eastern DRC that will produce conflict-free tin concentrate, while promoting community development, safety, health and environmentally sound practices. Alphamin, therefore has a robust and proactive programme of community outreach and engagement in place.
In April, 2016 a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between Alphamin and the Walikale Community to collaborate in creating the Lowa Alliance and to promote environmental conservation and the reduction of illegal artisanal mining on Alphamin concessions. Alphamin committed, from the date of production, to spend 4% of its in-country operating and administrative expenses on community development. This investment will be governed with representative input from local communities and will be managed by the Lowa Alliance, a Government of the DRC (“GDRC”)-regulated non-profit foundation, which is in the final stages of registration. The development of an industrial mine at Bisie will also generate leveraging of the GDRC and donor resources for additional investment in community infrastructure and social and economic development in the project affected communities.
The Lowa Alliance will invest, along with the community itself and other development partners including the Government of the DRC, in 120 projects over the initial five years, which will include schools and technical training, primary health care services, agriculture and fish-farming, small scale renewable energy, small and micro enterprise, community infrastructure, town zoning and road articulation to help manage growth, and women’s empowerment.
Alphamin through its exploration and development phase has already created 350 new jobs, invested in road and telecommunications infrastructure to unlock the isolated Walikale territory, developed 25 participatory local development plans representing the long-term needs of the 14,000 households living closest to the mine, and recently completed the construction of a quality primary school with solar powered lighting.
Alphamin’s artisanal mining strategy is also highly integrated with the community development strategy and promotes incentives for artisanal miners to operate away from project areas with improved legal and other conditions. The artisanal mining strategy also works with authorities to improve compliance with regulatory frameworks. Alphamin will encourage and assist GDRC authorities, supported by the supply chain and donor financed traceability systems, to identify more sites for legal artisanal mining and to support their validation and traceability. Alphamin is responsible for consistent monitoring of all community initiatives, including the artisanal strategy, and will work with all involved stakeholders to assure respect for and compliance with the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights guidelines.
CAUTION REGARDING FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS
Information in this news release that is not a statement of historical fact constitutes forward-looking information. Forward-looking statements contained herein include, without limitation, statements relating to costs of production, success of mining operations, the ranking of the project in terms of cash cost and production, economic return estimates, capital costs for the project, mineral resource and reserve estimates, social, community and environmental impacts, and continued positive discussions and relationships with local communities and stakeholders. Forward-looking statements are based on assumptions management believes to be reasonable at the time such statements are made. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Although Alphamin has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in forward-looking statements, there may be other factors that cause results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. Factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from expected results described in forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to: Alphamin’s ability to secure sufficient financing to advance and complete the Bisie Tin Project, uncertainties associated with Alphamin’s resource and reserve estimates, uncertainties regarding the estimation of future costs, uncertainties regarding global supply and demand for tin and market and sales prices, uncertainties associated with securing off-take agreements and customer contracts, uncertainties with respect to social, community and environmental impacts, adverse political events, uncertainties with respect to optimization opportunities for the Bisie Tin Project, as well as those risk factors set out in the Company’s Management Discussion and Analysis and other disclosure documents available under the Company’s profile at www.sedar.com. Forward-looking statements contained herein are made as of the date of this news release and Alphamin disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or results or otherwise, except as required by applicable securities laws.”