Canadian mining company Lundin Mining is in talks to sell a stake of between 40% and 50% in the Josemaria mine in the San Juan province of Argentina to Japanese trading houses and large miners, reported Reuters, citing the company’s incoming CEO Jack Lundin.

Lundin is undertaking risk analysis prior to finalising potential strategic partners for the mine development.

The company’s decision is anticipated next year, said Lundin, who is due to begin his new role in January 2024.

Lundin said: “We would like to come to the market with a plan for executing the development of the project, which will likely entail partnership in order to help us dilute risk and carry support with capital, technical and political support.”

Earlier, the company said that the mine will require an estimated development cost of around $1.3bn.

“We are for now comfortable with our liquidity position and would consider financing options for specific projects,” the incoming CEO added.

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The company, which is keeping an eye on the decreasing trend in copper pricing, expects the price of the commodity to drop below $3.60 per pound. The drop in prices may compel some mining companies to reduce production.

However, the company has no plans to stop production “at the moment”, Lundin said.

“We are looking at bringing down costs… and really trying to weather the storm that we are in,” noted Lundin.

The Josemaria copper-gold-silver project is wholly owned and operated by Lundin Mining’s Argentinian subsidiary Desarrollo de Prospectos Mineros.

It is due to be developed as a large-scale open-pit mining operation.