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August 28, 2020

Coronavirus company news summary – Freeport-McMoran to ease lockdown at Grasberg mine – Midland Exploration restarts drilling on Maritime-Cadillac

By Jessica Paige

28 August

Anglo American Platinum has donated an ICU with ten beds to Gweru Provincial Hospital located near its Unki Mine in Zimbabwe. The donation of the ICU with newly equipped beds is part of the company’s efforts to limit the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic at the workplace and in host communities. The company donated ventilators, ICU beds, oxygen equipment and installation, personal protective equipment, multi-parameter monitors and other medical equipment. The establishment of the ICU forms part of the mine’s $2m investment till date in Covid-19 measures.

Freeport-McMoran’s Indonesian unit has announced that it would ease a lockdown at its Grasberg gold and copper mine following protests by its workers this week. Operations at Grasberg were disrupted after workers blocked access to the mine in the easternmost region of Papua, demanding transport out of the mine resumes and for a bonus for working during the Covid-19 pandemic. Freeport Indonesia spokesman Riza Pratama said that the company and the local government had agreed to ease curbs to allow workers to leave the mine area and visit the nearby town.

Midland Exploration has restarted the drilling programme on Maritime-Cadillac, after it was suspended due to mandatory confinement measures related to Covid-19. The programme was initially planned in March. The Maritime-Cadillac property located along the Cadillac Break is a joint venture between Agnico Eagle Mines (51%) and Midland (49%). The new drilling programme has been designed to test the down-plunge extension of the Dyke East zone at a vertical depth of 600m and will include a drill hole totalling 850m in length.

Sibanye-Stillwater has reported solid operating results for the first half of this year (H1 2020) despite the challenges and disruptions posed by the Covid-19 pandemic across the globe. Production from all the operating segments increased year-on-year. The operational results underpinned a robust financial performance from the group, along with higher precious metal prices received for the period. Adjusted EBITDA of $990m for the period was 718% higher than for the comparable period last year.

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