SOPAMIN was originally created to manage the State of Niger's interests in mining joint ventures. Today we have acquired all state ownership and transaction institutions and projects where we believe there are significant opportunities to seize. Through our activities, we strive to maximize returns, both in the short and long term. Our long-term strategy is to exploit the under-exploited mineral resources of Niger.
We are continuing to invest in improving geological knowledge and highlighting the potential of new and exciting projects.
Our current interests include uranium, gold, coal, cement and mining logistics. We plan to further expand this portfolio over the next decade by structuring partnerships for strategic projects.
Liptako Mining Company
Tafassasset & djado
Gold Buying Desk
New Cement Factory in Kao
The Akouta Mining Company, founded in 1974, operates the world's largest underground uranium mine. Located at a depth of 250 meters, the mine has over 250 kilometers of tunnels. Its uranium ore has an average grade of 4 ‰ (4 kg of uranium per tonne of ore). After extraction, the ore is processed by a dynamic process (crushing, fine grinding, chemical treatment, washing, filtration, drying and conditioning) in order to obtain a uranium concentrate. COMINAK currently produces nearly 2,000 metric tonnes per year. By 2015, the company has reached a total production of 69,507 tonnes since the beginning of operations.
COMINAK contributes significantly to the well-being of its employees and social development with the establishment of health services in remote areas to improve the living conditions of local populations.
We own 31% of the company's shares.
SOMAÏR (Aïr Mining Company) operates several uranium deposits in northwestern Niger since 1971. Uranium ore is mined from open pit mines at a depth of 50 to 70 meters from a deposit Horizontal sedimentation. The average uranium ore content of the deposits is 2.8% (2.8 kg uranium per tonne of ore).
Initially, the ore was processed dynamically (crushing, fine grinding, chemical treatment, washing, filtration, drying and conditioning) at the plant located near the site. Low grade ore (less than 1 ‰) is statically processed using the acid heap leach method.
In both cases, uranium-containing solutions are then processed at the plant, the capacity of which has been increased to 3,000 tons per year in 2012 (7.8 million pounds of U3O8).
SOMAÏR is ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001 certified and has been engaged in a performance improvement process for several years to enhance its competitiveness in the global uranium market. The company intends to gradually increase its production.
In 2015, SOMAÏR produced 2,509 tons of uranium metal in the form of sodium uranate, bringing its cumulative production from mining to more than 63,240 tons of uranium. We own 36.6% of the interests of SOMAÏR's shares.
The Société des Mines d'Azelik operates a uranium mine located 150 kilometers north-west of Agadez. The deposit is estimated at about 13,000 tons of uranium at 0.2%. Mining operations began in December 2010, with the first production of yellow cake. The total production of the Azelik mines is estimated at 7,000 tons per year. We own 33% of the company.
With an estimated production of about 5000 tons of uranium a year over 35 years, Imouraren ranks first among the largest uranium projects in the African continent and the second largest in the world. The deposit was discovered in 1966 by the teams of the Commissariat à l'Energie Atomique. It is located 160 kilometers from Agadez and 80 kilometers from Arlit.
It covers an area of 20 km2 and the company has listed nearly 213,700 tons of uranium reserves at 0.07% U and more 62,500 tons of indicated resources. The depth of the deposit is between 100 and 150 meters below the surface and the maximum thickness is 60 m with an average grade of 700 grams of uranium per tonne of rock extracted. The deposit will be operated by the open pit method and the ore will be treated using acid heap leaching. This will be the first time this ore processing method is used for a deposit of this size. At full production, the acid heap leach facility of the project will process 20,000 tons of ore per day with an expected recovery rate of 85%. The project represents an investment of 1.9 billion € .We hold 33.35% of the project.
The Niger Energy Mining Company (NMCC) operates the Salkadamna project, which consists of the development of a coal mine and a thermal power station:
The coal mine is located in northwestern Niger. Reserves are estimated at 92 million tonnes, with about 53 million tonnes of exploitable reserves in the first field. The deposit has an average depth of 75m, and consists of seven layers of coal, five of which are wholly or partially exploitable. Current exploration programs aim to significantly increase the project's reserves. The mine is expected to produce 1.1 million tons of coal per open pit mining.
The thermal power plant has a capacity of 600 MW of production. The first phase of the plant's construction consists of four units of 50MW each, using an environmentally friendly Fluidized Bed (CFL) technology. The plant will use the coal produced from the open pit mine.
We hold 31.66% of the projects at the Salkadamna mine and thermal power plant. The development of the project represents an investment of nearly US $ 1.2 billion. The project, once completed, will significantly strengthen Niger's energy production capacity, thereby reducing import dependency.
LIPTAKO MINES CORPORATION (SML)
SML operates the Samira gold mine, which began production in 2004.
The company operates two open pits, located approximately
100km west of the capital Niamey in the geographical area known as the Liptako region and fairly accessible by road. Prior to production, the total reserves of the two wells were estimated at about 10 million tonnes grading 2.2 g / t Au.
The mine was operated by Semafo Inc. (80%) and SOPAMIN (20%). The Samira Hill project consists of open pit mine, operating various deposits in mining licenses and Samira Djounga Boulon-Libiri, and associated CIL mill and infrastructure. The processing facility includes a crusher, a ball mill and a CIL production plant at a rate of 4,000 (mixed oxide) at 6,000 tons per day.
The operation has a medical clinic, which provides care to local communities.
Acquisition by SOPAMIN
In 2013, Semafo Inc. suspended operations at the Samira mine and began the process of selling its interests.
We conducted a mission of SRK Consulting to undertake a technical and financial due diligence of the gold mine. Following SRK's conclusions, we bought back all the shares of Semafo Inc., thus increasing our level of participation. We were able to restart the mine, strengthen plant and plant capacity and extend the life of the project with the acquisition of new satellite permits.
After two years of operation we sold 75% of the interest in February 2016.
Tafassasset & Djado
Tafassasset gold exploration permits (3,953 km2) and Djado (4,897 km2) are located in the extreme north of the Mountains of the Aïr Mountains, near
1500 km from the capital of Niger. They are accessible by the national road to Agadez, then by the desert tracks about 200 km from Arlit.
Geo-Africa conducted a comparison of the geological data of the Tiririne-Hanane gold deposit (near the Algerian border) with that of Tafassasset to evaluate the potential and possible extension of the Tiririne deposit. His interpretation confirmed the continuation of the Algerian gold seam on the Nigerian territory.
The recognition program undertaken by the company in 1999 revealed highly gold-bearing quartz reefs.
The main quartz vein identified extends over a distance of nearly 2 km with grades between 6 g / t Au and 40 g / t Au.
SOPAMIN has already conducted a number of systematic reconnaissance missions to Tafassasset and Djado to prepare a major exploration campaign to quickly identify new surface targets and gradually increase the gold potential of permits.
The results of these missions are promising and will soon be published on our website.
GOLD PURCHASE COUNTER
Our investments in the small-scale mining sector are part of our economic and social development efforts.
The main objective of the Gold Buying Center is to buy gold from mining craftsmen at competitive prices through a quality service and effective settlement procedures.
Our commitment encourages the organization and supervision of the mine on a small scale. We facilitate access to the regulatory and processing structures that mining craftsmen need to develop their business. Small-scale mining is a rapidly growing sector in the mining industry in Niger. Our objective has two crucial aspects: to add significant value by contributing our systems and networks to miners; And more specifically, the establishment of an effective mechanism to control the production, marketing and export of gold and other precious metals.
We have learned a lot since the launch of this project.
We have systems in place to enable us to improve the services we offer to gold diggers. We have also improved the safety and well-being of individuals and groups at the gold panning sites.
Our mission is to develop and deliver tailor-made capacity building services to attract technical and financial support from local and international institutions.
We are proud of our initiatives and our investments in the gold panning zones of Djado and Taffassasset. We believe the benefits in the medium and long term are considerable. We intend to work with development partners to finance large-scale economic and social projects.
NEW KAO CEMETERY
It is in the region of the Ader doutchi that a strong potential in substance called career has been discovered. Since then, the project for the New Cement Plant in Kao has taken shape.
Its realization will undoubtedly impact the strong demand of Niger in cement.
In an initial phase, a number of actions were carried out, namely:
- The feasibility study;
- The project notice;
- Project Terms of Reference (TDR);
- Conducting an environmental impact study.
The CNTPS was created in 2009 to transport strategic or hazardous products such as explosives, nitrate, hydrocarbons and uranate.
We have a 55% interest in CNTPS.
-Additional information to be provided