Officials at Minera y Metalurgica del Boleo (MMB) have announced the first copper production at their El Boleo project in Mexico following $2 billion in investment. Korean Resources Corp. holds a 90% stake with Baja Mining Corp. holding the remainder; development of the asset Baja California Sur began in 2010.

With 2015 capacity slated at 51,000 tons of copper cathodes at 99.99% of purity, metallic cobalt is estimated at 1,700 tons with zinc sulfate at 25,000 tons annually, said officials, making El Boleo Mexico’s No. 2 copper producer and top metallic cobalt producer. Mine life is estimated to last 22 years, they added, while 2015 guidance includes 24,000 copper tons, 8,000 zinc sulfate tons and 600 tons of metallic cobalt.

The asset is self-sustained by generating water and energy via desalinization plants and a steam turbine, according to officials, minimizing local impacts. El Boleo, they added, has created 1,000 direct jobs, 65% represented by residents of nearby Santa Rosalia. Officials further announced that MMB has issued a $79.6 million corporate bond with repayment pending Q4 2019, along with an $84 million funding agreement through 2020.