Alderon Iron Ore and the Kami Mine Limited Partnership (The Kami LP) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Schneider Electric Canada related to the both acquisition of equipment and development funding for the Kami iron ore project, in western Labrador, Canada.
Tayfun Eldem, Alderon’s President and CEO, said: “We have chosen Schneider Electric because of their vast array of product and service offerings in power and energy management, process control and mine digitisation. The Kami LP will leverage Schneider Electric’s sustainable solutions to optimise energy usage and operating costs for the Kami project’s mining and processing operations.”
Eldem said this partnership could potentially reduce capital spending and equipment cost targets from its September 2018 updated feasibility study, tap into a broader range of export credit agencies (ECA) and accelerate the project schedule.
The September 2018 feasibility study envisaged a capital cost of $982.41 million for an operation producing 7.84 Mt/y of 65.2% Fe concentrate at an average estimated operating cost of $30.72/t. it also envisaged a 26 month construction period.
Alderon said the MoU provides for The Kami LP to evaluate the lease or purchase of equipment from Schneider Electric for use at Kami, a project owned 75% by Alderon and 25% by HBIS Group through The Kami LP.
It also provides for Schneider Electric to assist The Kami LP in its capital raising efforts by making introductions and facilitating discussions with potential financing sources for the Kami project, including funding from ECAs in regions where Schneider Electric manufactures its equipment.
“This assistance is expected to help The Kami LP raise the capital required to start construction of the Kami project,” Alderon said.
David Willick, Schneider Electric’s Vice President and Mining, Metals and Minerals Segment Leader in North America, said: “We are pleased to be a part of the Kami project and look forward to helping Alderon create an efficient and fully digital advanced mine, using our EcoStruxure architecture.”
The EcoStruxure platform is the “digital backbone connecting best-in-class operational technology solutions with the latest in IT technology to unlock trapped value in your operations and tap into the true potential of the Internet of Things”, Schneider says.
The Kami LP and Schneider Electric need to enter into definitive documentation in order for the transactions set out in the MoU to proceed, including agreements for the purchase of equipment.