TIDMATM

RNS Number : 3117G

AfriTin Mining Ltd

29 March 2022

29 March 2022

AfriTin Mining Limited

("AfriTin" or the "Company")

Quarterly and FY2022 Production Update

AfriTin Mining Limited (AIM: ATM), an African tech-metals mining company with a portfolio of mining and exploration assets in Namibia, is pleased to provide the quarterly production update for the Uis Tin Mine ("UMTC" or "Uis") for the fourth quarter ("Q4") and 12 months ending 28 February 2022 of the 2022 Financial Year ("FY2022") *.

Highlights:

   --      Annual ore processed increased 55% from FY2021 to 543,601 tonnes; 
   --      Annual tin concentrate production increased 70% to 804 tonnes in FY2022; 

-- Annual tin concentrate production was 12% above nameplate capacity reflecting strong operational performance;

   --      Strong tin price: Average tin price in Q4 of US$45,050 (Q3: 39,025); 

-- Ended the financial year with cash and cash equivalents of GBP7.372m (unaudited) (2021: GBP1.351m, audited); and

-- Existing Standard Bank working capital facility has been increased by N$40m (c. GBP2m) to N$75m (total value now c.GBP4m);

Anthony Viljoen (CEO) commented:

"I am pleased to provide our Q4 production update and annual production numbers. Uis has performed strongly with production exceeding nameplate capacity by 12%, an excellent achievement particularly given the backdrop of record tin prices. The Company ended the year in a strong financial position that will allow for the rapid deployment of the various growth initiatives, including expanded exploration, metallurgical test work on by-product extraction, specifically lithium, ore sorting test work and development of regional mining licence areas, that will be rolled out over the course of 2022."

Q4 Production Update

The Company delivered a strong quarterly operational performance, contributing to a record annual performance for Uis. A total record annual tin concentrate production of 804 tonnes was produced in FY2022, 12% above the annual nameplate production target of 720 tonnes. This represents a year-on-year (YoY) increase of 70% from FY2021.

An average plant processing rate of 92 tph was achieved for FY2022 against a design target of 80 tph. Over 500k tonnes of ore were processing during the year, a 55% YoY increase. Tin recovery remains above the targeted 60%. The average feed grade for FY2022 was lower than the preceding year due to natural grade variations in the mining area. However, the feed grade is still in line with the Company's mine plan estimates and the average projected life-of-mine feed grade of 0.138% Sn.

Operating costs and All-In Sustaining Costs (AISC) for FY2022 were approximately US$25,209/tonne and US$27,515/tonne, respectively (unaudited). This compares favourably to the realised average tin price of US$38,604 achieved for the year. Operating costs for Q4 increased 23% quarter on quarter of which the Directors believe approximately 50% of this increase, can be attributed to macro-economic factors related to increased smelting costs prices and exchange rate fluctuations. The balance is due to a drive for improvement in operational standards, with increased maintenance and spares inventory management. Various continuous improvement projects aim to reduce these costs further on a tin only basis. The Company completed the FY2022 with a net cash and cash equivalents balance of GBP7.372m (unaudited), up 446% from a FY2021 total of GBP1.351m (audited).

The FY2022 quarter-on-quarter (QoQ) and year-on-year (YoY) performance for Uis Tin Mining Company (UTMC) is tabulated below:

Table 1 : QoQ and YoY performance of UTMC during the 2022 Financial Year.

 
 Descriptio        Units                                  2022 Financial Year (March 2021 to February 2022) 
                -----------  ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 
                               Q1 Actual     Q2 Actual     Q3 Actual      Q4 Actual        QoQ        Total     Total         YoY 
                              (Mar - May)   (Jun - Aug)   (Sept - Nov)   (Dec - Feb)   Performance   FY 2021   FY 2022   Performance (% 
                                                                                       (% Change)                           Change) 
                -----------  ------------  ------------  -------------  ------------  ------------  --------  --------  --------------- 
     Plant 
  Availability       %           82**          86**           89**           89            0%          73        87           18% 
--------------  -----------  ------------  ------------  -------------  ------------  ------------  --------  --------  --------------- 
     Plant 
  Utilisation        %           75**          75**           83**           82            -1%         79        79            0% 
--------------  -----------  ------------  ------------  -------------  ------------  ------------  --------  --------  --------------- 
     Plant 
   Processing 
      Rate          tph           84            87             94            98            4%          66        92           39% 
--------------  -----------  ------------  ------------  -------------  ------------  ------------  --------  --------  --------------- 
 Ore Processed       t          115,751       127,263       148,700        151,887         2%        350,736   543,601        55% 
--------------  -----------  ------------  ------------  -------------  ------------  ------------  --------  --------  --------------- 
  Feed Grade        % Sn         0.167         0.137         0.150          0.137          -9%        0.190     0.147         -23% 
--------------  -----------  ------------  ------------  -------------  ------------  ------------  --------  --------  --------------- 
      Tin 
  Concentrate        t            183           185           220            216           -2%         473       804          70% 
--------------  -----------  ------------  ------------  -------------  ------------  ------------  --------  --------  --------------- 
 Tin Contained 
       in 
  Concentrate        t            114           113           136            134           -1%         309       497          61% 
--------------  -----------  ------------  ------------  -------------  ------------  ------------  --------  --------  --------------- 
 Tin Recovery        %            59            65             61            64            5%          46        62           34% 
--------------  -----------  ------------  ------------  -------------  ------------  ------------  --------  --------  --------------- 
   Operating       US$/t 
  Cost for Uis    contained 
    Tin Mine         tin       24,644***     28,077***     22,978***       28,300          23%       28,253    25,209         -11% 
--------------  -----------  ------------  ------------  -------------  ------------  ------------  --------  --------  --------------- 
                   US$/t 
 AISC for Uis     contained 
    Tin Mine         tin        28,158        29,931         23,290        29,224          25%       28,253    27,515         -3% 
--------------  -----------  ------------  ------------  -------------  ------------  ------------  --------  --------  --------------- 
                   US$/t 
   Tin Price      contained 
    Achieved         tin        30,749        34,235         39,025        45,050          15%       22,504    38,604         72% 
--------------  -----------  ------------  ------------  -------------  ------------  ------------  --------  --------  --------------- 
 

The Phase 1 Expansion Project is currently in progress and is estimated to increase tin concentrate production by 67% by way of modular expansion of the existing processing facility The bulk of the civil construction and steel fabrication has been completed, with on-site steel construction ramping up. Project construction is expected to be completed in Q3 of our Financial Year. Construction has been hampered by global supply chain shortages and constraints in local fabrication capacity. The Company will keep the market updated as the project progresses.

Working Capital Facility Update

AfriTin is pleased to announce that with immediate effect the existing Standard Bank Namibia Limited working capital facility set out in the announcement dated 26 November 2021 (the "Announcement") has been increased from N$35m to N$75m (c GBP4m). As set out in the Announcement, the working capital facility attracts interest at Namibian prime (currently 7.75%) less 1% and is reviewed on an annual basis. Owing to an increase in production of the through the at the operations, Standard Bank has increased its working capital facility to buffer the increased capacity against any unexpected disruptions in global supply chains as well as mitigating delivery of concentrate to the offtaker, Thaisarco as a result of shipping delays.

At the same time, with immediate effect, the Company has entered into vehicle asset financing of N$20m (c. GBP 1m) with Standard Bank Namibia Limited. This financing is to be used for the procurement of a crane and other vehicles required by the operations at Uis and attracts annual interest at a rate equal to Namibian prime (currently 7.75%). The financing facility is repayable on the date being 5 years from the date of drawdown, and the Company confirms that it has drawn down the full amount.

Exploration Drilling Update

The exploration drilling programme currently underway on the V1/V2 pegmatite orebody aims to increase the resource classification for Li and Ta over the areas where Sn is presently classified within the measured and indicated categories. The exploration project commenced in Q3* FY (2021). The programme is progressing in accordance with the approved timeline with results expected in Q3 (2022), a total of 1,674 m have been drilled since the commencement of the programme.

* The Company's Financial Year runs from March to February. All reference to quarters applies to the financial year reporting period.

** Restated historical availability and utilisation figures for FY2022 owing to adjustments in the calculation and reallocation of historical events.

*** Restated historical operating cost figures for FY2022 owing to adjustments in capitalisation and expenditure of costs associated with waste stripping.

Glossary of Terms

 
 Operating Costs                 Excludes sustaining capital expenditure associated with developing and maintaining 
                                 the Uis 
                                 operation (unaudited) 
 AISC = All-In Sustaining Cost   Incorporates all costs related to sustaining production and in particular recognising 
                                 the 
                                 sustaining capital expenditure associated with developing and maintaining the Uis 
                                 operation, 
                                 including pre-stripping waste mining costs (unaudited) 
                                -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 
 
 
 AfriTin Mining Limited                     +27 (11) 268 6555 
 Anthony Viljoen, CEO 
                                           --------------------- 
 Nominated Adviser                          +44 (0) 207 220 1666 
                                           --------------------- 
 WH Ireland Limited 
  Katy Mitchell 
                                           --------------------- 
 Corporate Advisor and Joint Broker 
                                           --------------------- 
 H&P Advisory Limited 
  Andrew Chubb 
  Jay Ashfield 
  Nilesh Patel                              +44 (0) 20 7907 8500 
                                           --------------------- 
 Stifel Nicolaus Europe Limited 
  Ashton Clanfield 
  Callum Stewart                            +44 (0) 20 7710 7600 
                                           --------------------- 
 Tavistock Financial PR (United Kingdom)    +44 (0) 207 920 3150 
                                           --------------------- 
 Jos Simson 
  Nick Elwes 
                                           --------------------- 
 

About AfriTin Mining Limited

Notes to Editors

AfriTin Mining Limited is a London-listed tech-metals mining company with a vision to create a portfolio of globally significant, conflict-free, producing assets. The Company's flagship asset is the Uis Tin Mine in Namibia, formerly the world's largest hard-rock open cast tin mine.

AfriTin is managed by an experienced board of directors and management team with a current strategy to ramp-up production at the Uis Tin Mine in Namibia to 10,000 tonnes of tin concentrate and 350,000 tonnes of lithium concentrate in a Phase 2 expansion, having reached Phase 1 commercial production in 2020. The Company strives to capitalise on the solid supply/demand fundamentals of tin and lithium by developing a critical mass of resource inventory, achieving production in the near term and further scaling production by consolidating assets in Africa.

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END

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