SOUTH AFRICAN, Mar. 23 -- First Uranium Corp (FIU.TO: Quote) said it expects to start construction of a key mine-waste storage facility in South Africa by November and sees commissioning by May 2011.
South African authorities reinstated permits for the tailings storage facility (TSF) last month that had been revoked in January.
The facility is key to an expansion of a project to extract gold and uranium from tailings -- or waste from previously mined ore -- left over from three gold and uranium mines that operated for 50 years.
The company also plans to scale back its operations from two operating gold plants to one by end of the month, mainly to control costs.
The miner expects to restart the second gold plant and commission the third gold plant in May 2011 and sees a throughput of 1.83 million tonnes per month.
First Uranium, which recently tied up for a $150 million financing and announced major changes to its board, said it expects operation of uranium plant modules and commencement of all three flotation plants in August 2011.
The company said it would begin construction of the pressure leach circuit of the uranium plant by April 2013, which is expected to increase gold recovery and uranium leach efficiency.
First Uranium shares closed at C$1.59 Friday on the Toronto Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Ashutosh Joshi in Bangalore; Editing by Ratul Ray Chaudhuri)