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Kamoa-Kakula's phase 1 copper output reserved for Zijin and CITIC

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(Kitco News) - Today, Ivanhoe Mines (TSX: IVN) announced that Kamoa Copper has signed copper concentrate and blister copper off-take agreements on competitive arm's-length commercial terms, for 100% of Kamoa-Kakula's Phase 1 copper output, which is projected to be approximately 200,000 tonnes of copper per year.

According to the statement, Kamoa Copper has signed off-take agreements with CITIC Metal and a subsidiary of Zijin, for 50% each of the copper products from Kamoa-Kakula's Phase 1 production. The off-take agreements are evergreen for the production volumes from Phase 1, including copper concentrate and blister copper resulting from processing of copper concentrates at the Lualaba Copper Smelter.

The company said that CITIC Metal and Zijin will purchase the copper concentrate at the Kakula Mine and the blister copper at the Lualaba Copper Smelter on a free-carrier basis, meaning the buyers will be responsible for arranging freight and shipment to the final destination, initially via the port of Durban, South Africa.

CITIC Metal and Zijin each will provide an advance payment facility of up to US$150 million (US$300 million in total) to be drawn at the election of Kamoa Copper from June 10, 2021, until May 31, 2023, the company added.

Kamoa Copper began producing copper concentrate on May 25, 2021, and made its first delivery of concentrates to the nearby Lualaba Copper Smelter, outside of Kolwezi, on June 1, 2021.

Ivanhoe's guidance for contained copper in concentrate expected to be produced by the Kamoa-Kakula project for the balance of 2021 is between 80,000 and 95,000 tonnes.

According to Ivanhoe, Kakula is projected to be the world's highest-grade major copper mine. Based on independent benchmarking, the project's phased expansion scenario to 19 Mtpa would position Kamoa-Kakula as the world's second-largest copper mining complex, with peak annual copper production of more than 800,000 tonnes.

The Kamoa-Kakula copper project is a joint venture between Ivanhoe Mines (39.6%), Zijin Mining Group (39.6%), Crystal River Global Limited (0.8%) and the Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo (20%).

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