ASX-LISTED Gold Coast copper mining company CuDeco (ASX:CDU) has secured regulatory approval for exploration in northwest Queensland.
The Bligh Government has approved mining leases for CuDeco’s Rocklands project near Cloncurry, with work expected to begin in 2013.
“The Minister for Mines, the Honourable Stirling Hinchliffe MP, has approved the grant of mining leases 90177 and 90188, which encompass the Rocklands Group Copper Project,” says CuDeco chairman Wayne McCrae (pictured) in a statement to the ASX.
“This is a major milestone for CuDeco Ltd and the company would like to thank all groups, employees and consultants associated with this achievement.”
The regulatory green-light defies investor scepticism about CuDeco's ability to reach the production stage.
CuDeco will soon commence dewatering the Rocklands mine site and develop with an initial 10 year life-span. The site is estimated to have an underground copper resource worth $12.5 billion.
McCrae plans to lift output to 5-10 million tonnes a year once production begins.
The company forecasts $270 million in annual profit from ore grades yielding 1.7 per cent copper – or $650 million if they yield 3 per cent.
CuDeco shares remained steady today at $3.41 per unit.
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