Berkeley Energia has started development of the Salamanca project in western Spain.

The $100m project has the potential to be a prominent uranium mine in Europe, possessing the capability to supply four million pounds of uranium concentrate per annum.

Once the project begins, the production will represent approximately 10% of the continent's total requirement.

The investment will create 450 new jobs and 2,700 indirect employment opportunities.

With shipments scheduled to start from 2018, the mine will supply to customers in Europe, the US and Asia. 

"This initial development is taking place over 100ha of land acquired from more than 30 local landowners."

Demand for uranium is forecast to expand from 2018 as US and EU utilities will begin re-contracting for supply of uranium.

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By GlobalData

These utilities will be competing with China, which is planning to bring seven new reactors on line a year and has earmarked another $570bn for development of an additional 60 reactors over ten years.

Currently, the mine's infrastructure is being developed that includes road, water dam, pedestrian footpaths and secure cattle paths and installation of Wi-Fi network.

The contract for rerouting the main powerline has been awarded to Iberdrola.

Material procurement will start early next year after completion of the road construction, which will take approximately three months.

This initial development is taking place over 100ha of land acquired from more than 30 local landowners. The company has appointed MDM Engineering to perform the front-end engineering design (FEED).

Berkeley managing director Paul Atherley said: “After a decade of investment we are absolutely delighted to start development of the initial infrastructure, which paves the way for the main construction early next year."