Boliden to invest €125m in Finnish expansion projects

15 February 2018 (Last Updated February 15th, 2018 12:36)

Swedish company Boliden is set to expand the Kevitsa copper-nickel mine and Harjavalta copper-nickel smelter in Finland with an aggregate investment of €125m.

Boliden to invest €125m in Finnish expansion projects
Kevitsa open-pit mine. Credit: Boliden/Tomas Westermark.

Swedish company Boliden is set to expand the Kevitsa copper-nickel mine and Harjavalta copper-nickel smelter in Finland with an aggregate investment of €125m.

The investment towards the expansion will be made until 2020.

From the total investment, €80m will be directed towards increasing production at Kevitsa from 7.5Mt to 9.5Mt per annum from 2021.

Boliden president and CEO Lennart Evrell said: “A few years ago, we decided to invest in the copper production at Harjavalta and revise our nickel strategy. Today’s investment decision should be viewed as part of the development of Boliden’s overall operations in Finland.”

Acquired in 2016, the Kevitsa copper-nickel mine serves as a concentrate supplier for the Harjavalta smelter.

The company will use the investment allocated for the mine to build an autogenous mill and peripheral equipment, as well as a new mill building.

“We have substantial mineral resources and high-grades, but the concentrator’s grinding capacity is limiting production.”

The investments will enable the company to achieve full production in the first quarter of 2021.

Boliden Mines president Mikael Staffas said: “Now that the integration of Kevitsa has been completed, it’s time to take the next step.

“We have substantial mineral resources and high-grades, but the concentrator’s grinding capacity is limiting production.”

The remaining €45m will enable the company to ramp-up copper cathode production at Harjavalta and Pori from 135,000t to 170,000t per annum.

In addition, the investment will enable the company to tackle bottlenecks related to the Harjavalta smelter, as well as an expansion of the Pori copper refinery.

The expansion is scheduled to be complete in the first quarter of 2020.

Currently, the company is selling around 15,000t of anode copper and the investment will allow Harjavalta to refine all of its anode copper in-house.