Ebola outbreak to hit production at London Mining’s Sierra Leone mine

21 August 2014 (Last Updated August 21st, 2014 18:30)

London Mining is anticipating a drop in production at its Marampa Mine in Sierra Leone due to the outbreak of the Ebola virus across West Africa.

London Mining is anticipating a drop in production at its Marampa Mine in Sierra Leone due to the outbreak of the Ebola virus across West Africa.

Although production volumes at the mine increased by 24% to 2.1 million tonnes (Mt) in the six months to the end of June, production could be affected during the next half, claimed the company.

London Mining CEO Graeme Hossie said: "While production has not been impacted by the outbreak of the Ebola virus to date, post the period end we have begun to experience disruption to the supply chain and to a number of services as we optimise the plant beyond its nominal run rate.

"The Ebola outbreak has so far affected 2,240 people and killed around 1,229 in Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia and Nigeria."

"As a result of a slower than expected ramp-up and Ebola, we have narrowed our 2014 production guidance to the lower end of the range, based on the current expected level of Ebola-related impact.

"We continue to be vigilant about keeping our employees healthy and are working closely with the Sierra Leonean Government and health agencies in this difficult time."

According to the World Health Organisation, the Ebola outbreak has so far affected 2,240 people and killed around 1,229 in Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia and Nigeria up to 16 August, reported Bloomberg.

Hosse was quoted by Reuters as saying: "We are starting to see, because of things like travel restrictions and more difficulties with supply chains, some areas that will prevent us from being fully effective."

Following the outbreak of the disease, the company has lowered its production in between 4.9Mt and 5.1Mt.

The company is expecting operating costs of around $50 per wet metric tonnes for the full year and additional $1 per tonne for Ebola-related costs.

London Mining is currently in talks with strategic partners for substantial investment to reduce the risk, fund mine and expand the production at the mine.

The entire process is expected to be completed before the end of the year.

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