Antofagasta plc announced on March 27, 2013, that Minera Antucoya, owned 70% by Antofagasta and 30% by Marubeni, will resume development of its Antucoya copper project in Chile’s Antofagasta region. The decision followed completion of a full review of the project announced in December 2012, when project development was temporarily suspended. The review included renegotiation of principal construction contracts, additional detailed engineering, and an updated resource model following further drilling of the deposit.
Development costs for the Antucoya project now are expected to total $1.9 billion, of which $0.5 billion had been spent when development was suspended in December. Operations are expected to begin during 2015, with production forecast to average 85,000 mt/y of copper cathodes over the first 10 years of the mine’s life.