Copper mining company Empresa Minera Mantos Blancos SA will decide by October how it will raise more than US$250 million to fund two copper projects in Chile, a company source said at the weekend.
Options include a capital increase on the Santiago Stock Exchange, on which the company is already listed, and bank loans, the source said. Mantos
Blancos is 75 percent owned by Anglo-American Corp. of South Africa, which would buy most of the shares in any capital increase, maintaining its percentage of the ownership, the source said.The decision will come after the company's board sees the results of feasibility studies for the two projects.
Mantos Blancos will receive the results in the next few days of a feasibility study for Manto Verde, a new copper mine project.
Exploiting an 85 million metric ton oxide deposit in the Atacama, with a
0.85 percent grade, Manto Verde should produce 35,000 to 40,000 metric tons of cathodes a year by the end of 1995, by heap-leaching electro-winning, the source said.
Results of another feasibility study examining alternatives for a heap- leaching electro-winning operation at the existing Mantos Blancos mine will be ready in three or four months.
The company is already determined to undertake an operation to join two existing pits at Mantos Blancos and phase out the last remaining production of
concentrates from sulfide ores.
The remodeled Mantos Blancos will be renamed Santa Barbara. Production should be about 70,000 metric tons of copper a year, the same as in the existing operation.