The Mbalam-Nabeba iron ore project includes the development of iron ore deposits in Cameroon and the Democratic Republic of
the Congo, West Africa. It is estimated to produce 35 million tonnes per annum for at least 25 years. Open-cut mining will
be used to recover the iron ore.
The project is being developed by Sundance Resources whose 100% acquisition by Hanlong (Africa) Mining is under negotiation
since June 2011.
Four main deposits – Mbarga, Mbarga South, Metzimevin and Nabeba – will be initially developed under the project. The
majority of the resources are contained in the Mbarga and Nabeba deposits. The project also includes the Meridional, Njweng
and Letioukbala deposits, which require further exploration.
The Mbalam-Nabeba iron ore project has been put on a fast-track schedule, with production scheduled to begin in 2017.
Environmental approval was obtained from Cameroon in July 2010. The definitive feasibility study for stage one and the
pre-feasibility study for stage two of the Mbalam-Nabeba iron ore project was completed in April 2011.
The first stage of the project is expected to cost $4.6bn with capital pay back projected to be achieved in three years.
CITIC Securities arranged the project’s finance.
Stage one of the project will be mostly a direct ore shipping project that will operate for a minimum of ten years, and
stage two will operate for 15 years.
Construction on stage 1 is expected to begin in late 2014. The infrastructure to be constructed includes processing plants,
stockpiling facilities and a railway system. A new port, which will handle 300,000 dead weight tonnage vessels, will be
built as part of the project. The engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contracts are yet to be awarded.
Once the project is implemented, Sundance will become one of the top ten iron ore producers in the world.
The company signed a 10-year off-take agreement with Noble Resources International in March 2014. Noble will purchase the
entire direct shipping ore (DSO) produced by the mine as part of the agreement.