Murray & Roberts Cementation Zambia has bagged a $320m shaft sinking and equipping contract from Mopani Copper Mines for the Nkana copper and cobalt mine near Kitwe, Zambia.

The main shaft will be sunk to 1,200m and equipped as a rock hoisting shaft to service the Synclinorium ore body.

The shaft is expected to increase Nkana mine’s life by 25 years, while ore production will rise from 3.4Mtpa to 5.1Mtpa by 2018.

The project will also include a 6m diameter raise bored ventilation shaft to be developed at the mine.

To date, the Nkana mine has produced over 6Mt of copper, reports Mineweb.