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Business

DENR approves Rapu-Rapu test run

- Rocel Felix -
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has given the go signal for Rapu-Rapu Processing Inc. (RRPI), the local subsidiary of Australian mining company Lafayette Mining Ltd., to start the third and last phase of the test run of its polymettalic mine and processing facility in Albay.

The mining company is now processing ore and chemical reagents to test run the production of copper, zinc, gold and silver.

In yesterday’s disclosure to the Australian Stock Exchange, the company said it expects to progressively ramp up production of copper and zinc concentrates from the processing plant and to further test the project’s environmental management systems.

An application for a permanent lifting order will then be made to formalize and complete the environmental and regulatory rehabilitation of the project.

The first phase of the test run involved the circulation of water into the system to test for leakages. The second stage involved the processing of non-ore bearing materials.

Lafayette said the company is also addressing working capital issues and the hedging restructure.

In a previous statement, Lafayette managing director David Baker said the company is confident that the project’s comprehensive environmental system will meet the standards of the DENR.

He said the company continues to enjoy the support of its joint venture partners.

LG International and Kores provided a soft loan of $4.81 million during the period of RRPI’s suspension, while its consortium of lenders provided a $7.8-million credit standby facility.

In November 2005, Lafayette voluntarily suspended its operations following two mining spill incidents in October.

ALBAY AUSTRALIAN STOCK EXCHANGE COMPANY DAVID BAKER DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES IN NOVEMBER INTERNATIONAL AND KORES LAFAYETTE MINING LTD PROCESSING RAPU-RAPU PROCESSING INC TEST
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