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Uranium One says new acid plant will ease shortage
TORONTO, June 11 |
TORONTO, June 11 (Reuters) - Uranium One (UUU.TO) said on Wednesday that new sulphuric acid production from a plant near Balkhash, Kazakhstan, should relieve the uranium miner's acid shortage in the short-term.
"This will remove the near-term sulphuric acid constraint," the company's vice-president of corporate development, Chris Sattler, said at a mining conference in Toronto.
Sattler said current and expected acid allocations were sufficient to fill its production guidance. The Toronto-based miner expects to produce 3.15 million pounds of uranium this year.
London-listed Kazakhmys Corp. (KAZ.L) said last month it should soon begin producing acid from its 1.2 million tonne plant in Balkhash.
Sattler said the entire Kazakh industry consumed about 600,000 tonnes last year.
Uranium One, which has operations in Kazakhstan and South Africa, was forced so slash its forecasts last October due a shortage of acid in Kazakhstan.
Sulphuric acid is the main chemical reagent for production of uranium by the in-situ leaching method.
Over the longer term, the company is part of a consortium planning to build a 500,000 tonne-per-year acid plant by 2010. (Reporting by Cameron French' editing by Rob Wilson)
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