May 17, 2010 (DOW JONES NEWSWIRES) --Toronto-listed Equinox Minerals Ltd. (EQN.T) isn't planning to build a copper smelter at its Lumwana Copper Mine in Zambia in the near future and is now focused on making the mine fully operational, the Post newspaper in Zambia reports Monday.
The company is on target to achieve full capacity production at the mine in the second half of 2010, Equinox Minerals vice-president for investor relations Kevin Van Niekerk is quoted as saying by the privately owned daily.
Lumwana is Zambia's largest open pit mine.
"At this time, we do not have plans to build our own smelter at Lumwana to become a top-down integrated copper producer," he was cited as saying.
Currently, the company ships copper concentrates from the mine for treatment at smelters on the Copperbelt province.