Globe Metals and Mining executive manager Neville Haxham has said once its Kanyika Niobium project in Mzimba is fully operational, it will create over 1 200 jobs and improve the socio-economic status of residents around the mine.
Globe Metals is the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX)-listed African-focused specialty metals and rare earths company and is in the process of exploring for niobium at Kanyika in Mzimba.
Speaking in an interview in Lilongwe on Tuesday, Haxham said his company has set aside $4 million (K1.7 billion) for the project and had it been that there were no delays due to change of governments in May this year, the project could have been fully operational by now.
“We are still negotiating with government and we are making some progress. The only hitch that we can talk about is that there was a change of government and this somehow affected progress on negotiations.
“But we are hopeful everything will be concluded in good time for the betterment of the country,” he said.
Haxham noted there are several issues the company needs to sort out with government, saying they are hopeful that all the technical areas where there are hitches will be professionally sorted out.
He said the company wants to maximise its metallurgical processes so that they can recover enough ore body from rocks.
In March 2014, Globe Metals announced that its 40-tonne bulk sample from the Kanyika Niobium Project arrived in China for the metallurgical pilot plant programme.
According to the company, the Kanyika metallurgical pilot plant commenced operations at Guangzhou Research Institute of Non-Ferrous Metals (GZRINM).
Globe has not yet moved from prospecting to mining at any of its project sites in Malawi.
The company continues to negotiate the terms of the Mining Development Agreement with the Malawi Government for the Kanyika Niobium Project.