On May 5, Sibanye-Stillwater reached a significant milestone at the Marikana K4 project, when it hoisted the first tons since the resumption of the project. Part of the company’s South African platinum group metals (PGM) operations, Marikana K4 is a largely predeveloped and equipped, high return project, which will access both the Merensky and UG2 reefs to produce on average approximately 250,000 4Eoz per year at steady state over a 50-year life.

Both the main and vertical shafts have been predeveloped and equipped to depths of 1,332 meters (m) and 1,078 m, respectively. To a large extent, associated surface infrastructure is in place, with only minor refurbishments required. In addition, the K4 concentrator is already fully operational with a nameplate capacity of approximately 130,000 metric tons per month (mt/m) of UG2 and Merensky reef.

“The K4 project is an unrivaled, top tier project in the PGM industry, which will deliver significant value and benefits for all stakeholders for many years,” Sibanye-Stillwater CEO Neal Froneman said. “We are investing approximately R4 billion ($250 million) in the future of Marikana through the development of this world-class project, confirming the ongoing commitment to the sustainability of our company and its stakeholders.”

The company said the Marikana K4 project will create value for all stakeholders for many decades, providing more than 4,000 direct jobs over its operating life and opportunities for local businesses, development of small and medium enterprises, as well as ensuring significant local economic development and skills transfer for local communities.