Canadian mining firm Wheaton Precious Metals has agreed to terminate its silver streaming deal with certain Glencore subsidiaries on the Yauliyacu mine in Peru, for $150m in cash.
The move would allow Glencore to divest the Yauliyacu underground zinc-lead-silver mine, which has been in continuous production for more than 100 years.
In 2006, Wheaton acquired the mine’s silver stream for an upfront consideration of $285m. Subsequently, the firm generated a cash flow exceeding $485m from the stream.
Wheaton president and CEO Randy Smallwood said: “Yauliyacu has been part of Wheaton’s portfolio since 2006 and has been integral to the history of our company.
“Consistent with a core principle of working with our partners, Wheaton has agreed to terminate the stream, adding even more financial capacity to explore new opportunities that we believe are in the best interests of our shareholders.”
The transaction is subject to offloading the Peruvian mine by Glencore before 31 December 2022 and other customary conditions.
The Yauliyacu mill has a 3,600tpd production capacity and can produce separate copper, lead and zinc concentrates, which are subsequently shipped for smelting.
In a separate development, Glencore said it plans to invest C$520m ($403m) in the Horne copper smelter in northern Quebec over a five-year period to reduce toxic emissions, reported Bloomberg News.
The investment aims to reduce the arsenic level at the Horne Smelter down to 15 nanograms by 2027, Glencore’s North America copper operations head Claude Belanger said.
According to health officials, the toxic emissions at the smelter have resulted in an increased risk of cancer and other health problems.