Over the past eight months, Autumn Skies Resources and Logistics (ASR&L) has been developing its Autumn Skies Iron Ore (ASIO) mine which is South Africa's first private fully owned BEE iron ore mine under the leadership of its executive chairman and owner Advocate Phemelo Sehunelo.
ASIO is situated next to the Sedi-beng mine near Postmasburg in the Northern Cape and has a current minable resource of approximately eighteen million tons of iron ore and has become only the fifth active iron ore mining group in the Northern Cape.
ASR&L is a fully owned private BEE asset with a current capital investment of R182-million and with the strategic and technical support of the Estupendu Group, the goal is to produce approximately 42000 tons of iron ore per month to be transported via Transnet's Sishen -
Saldanha iron ore channel.
504 000 tons will be supplied in the first year of operation commencing on 01 February 2018 and it is hoped to grow to one million tons per an-num over the next 12 - 18 months.
The first trial production and logis-tics runs have been successful with approximately 20 000 tons on stock-pile at Transnet Port Terminals (TPT) in Saldanha harbour.
The strategic assistance and sup-port of Transnet Freight Rail (TFR) and TPT have been a crucial part of being able to plan and execute such an ambitious project.
With a new jig plant coming on-line at the end of January 2018 and a new crushing and screening plant coming on-line at the end of March 2018, the mine will be producing top grade export iron ore.
ASIO will employ approximately 153 employees and contractors and will add to the growth in the local
employment market and add to the prosperity of the Northern Cape population who is extremely depen-dent on the mining sector.
ASIO hopes that the dominant giants in the SA iron ore industry such as Kumba and Assmang will allow and nurture junior BEE mines to become part of the South African iron ore supply chain, as there still remains a huge gap in the interna-tional iron ore market for junior mines to participate in and add value to the SA economy.
ASIO is a milestone achievement that projects the dedication and sacrifice that local junior miners are prepared to make to enter into the iron ore mining sector in the North-ern Cape and with the support and assistance of the likes of the DMR and Transnet such dreams and aspi-rations can be achieved.
Strata Africa communication
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