Xstrata Zinc Canada has initiated construction of the new Bracemac-McLeod underground mine, 4 km from its Matagami concentrator in Quebec, Canada. At full production, the mine will produce 80,000 mt/y of zinc and 10,000 mt/y of copper in concentrates, with development ore expected in early 2012 and full production scheduled for the first quarter of 2013. The project is a joint-venture, owned 65% by Xstrata Zinc and 35% by Donner Metals, with Xstrata as project manager.

Total capital cost for the Bracemac-McLeod mine will be about C$158 million, of which Xstrata’s share will be approximately C$104 million. The mine will provide 250 jobs for its life span of at least four years.

The Matagami concentrator is currently supplied with ore from Xstrata Zinc’s nearby Perseverance mine. Jean Desrosiers, vice president of mining operations, Xstrata Zinc Canada said, “The Bracemac-McLeod mine is a low-capital-cost, high-return project that will provide a continued feed of ore to Xstrata’s Matagami concentrator once the Perseverance mine comes to the end of its life. The new mine will use existing processing infrastructure and will provide ongoing employment opportunities for the existing workforce at Perseverance.”