Harmony boosted by ‘prescribed status’ for Eva Copper

Copper pour

HARMONY Gold said its Eva Copper had been declared a prescribed project, a development that boosts its chances of receiving permitting approvals.

Australia’s Queensland administration issued the declaration on Monday in recognition of Eva Copper’s “social and economic significance”. The project will generate up to 800 jobs during construction and 450 jobs when operating, said Harmony.

Harmony said in November it there would be slippage on its Eva copper project as permit authorisations would take “longer than anticipated”.

“Project permit amendment assessment and change requirements determined that the project will require both minor and major permit amendments,” said Jared Coetzer, spokesperson for Harmony at the time.

“The major amendments are associated with the proposed blended power solution, the water supply and site water management solution, the increase in processing rate, and inclusion of wind power in the future,” he said. As a result, an update of the project’s feasibility study would be delayed.

Harmony paid $170m in cash up front for Eva Copper funded through a revolving credit facility. According to a study by the previous owner Copper Mountain, Eva would require pre-production development capital of $597m.

Project commissioning was expected to take between two to three years post a review and optimisation study. The Eva project is expected to yield 100 million pounds of copper a year and 14,000 ounces of gold annually over an expected mine life of 15 years, depending the outcome of Harmony’s feasibility study.