Conakry, 27th february — Guinea Alumina Corporation, a major company in Guinea’s mining sector, today announced that its project to develop a bauxite mine and associated export facilities in the Boké region is now one-third complete. Overall project progress stands at 37 per cent.
The GAC project, which has a total budgeted project cost of approximately $1.4 billion, is one of the largest greenfield investments in Guinea in the past 40 years and is contributing considerably to the country by creating employment, economic opportunities and revenue for the Government.
Almost 3,000 people are currently working to build the GAC project. More than 80 per cent of the workforce is Guinean, most from the Boké region.
GAC is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Emirates Global Aluminium of the United Arab Emirates, one of the largest ‘premium aluminium’ producers in the world.
First bauxite exports from the GAC project are expected during the second half of 2019. Once steady-state operations are achieved, the project is expected to produce some 12 million tonnes of bauxite per year, significantly contributing to Guinea’s bauxite exports.
Guinea is the world’s largest bauxite resource holder, with more than a quarter of all bauxite resources worldwide located within its borders. Bauxite is the primary input in the production of aluminium, which is used in industries including construction, aerospace, packaging and transportation.
In January the GAC overall operations reached eight million man-hours worked without a Lost Time Injury, the equivalent of one person working for almost 2,000 years. The project has not recorded a Lost Time Injury since 2016.
Paulo Roberto Castellari, Chief Executive Officer of GAC, said: “GAC is a strategic growth project for our company and for Guinea, significantly boosting the country’s mining sector and contributing to the growth of the national economy. Reaching this milestone is a great moment and I look forward to the safe and successful completion of the rest of the project.”
The GAC project includes the development of a bauxite mine some 75 kilometres from the coast, as well as related transport infrastructure including an upgrade to an existing multi-user rail system and the development of port facilities at Kamsar, which contribute to the development of local infrastructure.
GAC’s mining concession area mostly consists of low hills. Bauxite deposits are found at or near the surface on the plateaus of these hills and will be mined via standard open pit drill-and-blast operation.
During the operations phase, the project is expected to directly employ some 350 people as staff and some 400 contractors.
GAC also invests to support the communities near its operations including in health, infrastructure, education and training.