The De Beers Consolidated Mines (DBCM) Board has taken the decision to proceed with the responsible closure and rehabilitation of Voorspoed Mine in the Free State Province.

According to the company, this decision follows an extensive, transparent and comprehensive disposal process, which involved a rigorous due diligence exercise on the bidders to acquire the mine.

The diamond group explained that the disposal process was unsuccessful in identifying a suitable operator that met the specified criteria and therefore the closure process will now be initiated in accordance with the company’s values and with due consideration of employees and host communities.

Phillip Barton, DBCM CEO, said, “Our priority throughout the disposal process has always been the safety and wellbeing of our employees at Voorspoed Mine and we were committed to ensuring that any potential future operator would not only have the required technical and financial capability, but also values that are aligned with those of DBCM.

“Unfortunately, we have not been able to identify a bidder that met the necessary criteria and so we have reluctantly taken the decision to close the operation, in a responsible manner, as it is no longer economically viable for DBCM to operate the mine. We do not underestimate the impact this will have on Voorspoed Mine’s employees and we have put in place appropriate support structures.

The CEO noted that when DBCM opened the mine in 2018, the expected life of mine was approximately 10 years. He said the mine was able to operate in an exemplary manner despite a young workforce.

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