Paladin Energy Ltd is a uranium production company with exploration projects in Australia and Canada, and with mines and exploration projects in Namibia and Malawi. The Company’s head office is located in Perth, Australia. Paladin is limited by shares, and is incorporated and domiciled in Australia. The Company is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange and Namibian Stock Exchange. LHM in Namibia is currently Paladin’s only producing mine as KM was placed on care and maintenance in mid-2014 due to the low uranium price and the resulting non-profitability.
Paladin’s value is based on five key drivers: producing mines; quality project pipeline; proven team; industry positioning; and the sustainability of its operations. The Company has a proven track record in mining and processing innovation, establishing in-house technical strength and consolidating a unique geographically diversified asset base. Paladin’s ongoing focus remains on technical innovation and cost optimisation as well as having a business strategy to establish key partnerships to strengthen the Company.
For more information on Paladin’s exploration sites and mining operations, please refer to Paladin’s website .
LANGER HEINRICH MINE (LHM)
LHM, located in Namibia in the Namib Desert, is a surficial, calcrete type uranium deposit, with ore treated using an alkaline leach and ion exchange process. Paladin currently owns 75% of LHM through its subsidiary Langer Heinrich Uranium (Pty) Ltd (LHUPL). The remaining 25% is owned by CNNC Overseas Uranium Holding Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of China National Nuclear Corporation.
In 2005, Paladin commenced construction of LHM with operations commencing in 2007 and reaching Stage 1 nameplate of 2.7 Mlb of uranium oxide in 2008/2009. Construction on the Stage 2 expansion commenced in 2009 and was completed in 2010, increasing production to 3.7 Mlb per annum. The Stage 3 expansion, commenced in 2011 and completed in 2012, further increased production to 5.2 Mlb per annum. LHM produced consistently at that rate during the reporting period. The expected remaining project life of LHM is around 20 years.
During the reporting period 2,931,155 tonnes (t) of medium and high grade ore and 2,298,365t of low grade ore was mined during the reporting period. 19,851,249 of waste rock material was moved during the reporting period. 3,574,147t of ore was processed to produce around 4,763,156 lb of uranium oxide. Of this product 4,736,662 lb was drummed and transported to Walvis Bay for shipment to overseas converters.
KAYELEKERA MINE (KM)
KM, located in northern Malawi, is a sandstone-hosted uranium deposit. KM is owned by Paladin (Africa) Limited (PAL), a subsidiary of Paladin. The Government of Malawi holds 15% equity in PAL within the terms of a Development Agreement signed in 2007 between the Company and the Government of Malawi. KM was officially opened in 2009 and ramped up to its production rate of 3.3 Mlb of uranium oxide per annum, just prior to the mine being placed on care and maintenance.
Due to the sustained low uranium price, mining ceased in February 2014 with processing of the ore and reagent rundown continuing to May 2014 at which time the site was placed on care and maintenance. Therefore no mining or processing was undertaken during the reporting period. The key focus at KM during care and maintenance is the safety of personnel and the security of the project assets. The key care and maintenance activities include maintaining plant and equipment in a state of readiness to facilitate a restart of operations, complying with legal and social obligations, conducting environmental and radiological monitoring, progressively rehabilitating disturbed areas, and treating and discharging rain water collected in the on-site ponds to reduce KM’s water inventory prior to the onset of the next rainfall season.