Cupric Canyon Capital subsidiary Khoemacaue Copper Mining has announced plans to begin construction of an underground copper mine in Botswana’s Kalahari copper belt in 2016.

Khoemacaue regional manager Johannes Tsimako said the company secured government approval for the project earlier this year.

The 3.6 million tonnes of ore produced at the copper mine would be refined to produce 50,000t of copper concentrate.

"The plan is to utilise Boseto’s processing infrastructure for the new mine."

According to Tsimako, Khoemacaue offered $33m to acquire the Boseto copper mine, which is located near the proposed site.

Boseto copper mine had been operated by Australia-based Discovery Metals, which is having its assets being liquidated.

Tsimako told Reuters: "The plan is to utilise Boseto’s processing infrastructure for the new mine."

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Established in 2010, private equity firm Cupric Canyon will buy undeveloped copper assets.

The Botswana Government is also considering acquisition of a 15% stake in the planned copper operation.

Located in Ngamiland in the Kalahari copper belt of north-west Botswana, the Boseto copper mine is 100% owned by Discovery Metals and being developed using open cut methods.

Said to be part of the Ghanzi-Chobe fold belt, the mine comprises Zeta, Plutus and Petra prospects.

The mine is found to contain copper in the form of chalcocite primarily.