Japan’s Mitsubishi Materials has taken an equity stake in Copper Mountain Mining’s project in British Columbia and agreed to purchase all copper concentrate from the mine.

Mitsubishi will acquire a 25% interest in the project from the Canadian miner for C$28.75m and will work towards obtaining a C$250m loan for the project.

The project is an open pit porphyry mine and produced about 1.74 billion pounds of copper, 9.1 million ounces of silver and 730 thousand ounces of gold between 1972 and 1996.

Recent exploration programmes estimates the project’s current resource as five billion pounds of copper at a 0.15% Cu cut-off.

Copper Mountain Mining CEO Jim O’Rourke said last year’s conditional approval of the project requires the company to obtain necessary funding arrangements and operating permit amendments.

“I am extremely pleased to have such a strong partner as Mitsubishi which brings the financial clout of a major behind the project,” O’Rourke said.

The project is expected to begin production in mid-2011.