(Official corrects size of possible expansion in Afghanistan copper mine to 320,000 tonnes from 500,000; clarifies conditions for expansion and building of a smelter, corrects Zeng Tao's job title)
CHENGDU China, June 30 (Reuters) - A copper mine joint venture between Metallurgical Corp of China (MCC) (1618.HK) and Jiangxi Copper (0358.HK) in Afghanistan is expected to start production of copper concentrates in 2013, an executive at MCC Tongsin Resources Ltd said on Wednesday.
The first phase of the Aynak copper mining project would have a designed capacity of 200,000 tonnes of copper in concentrate, said Zeng Tao at the sales department of the copper and zinc unit of Hong Kong-listed MCC.
He said capacity would be expanded to 320,000 tonnes in the second phase, depending on a further feasibility study. He did not provide a timeframe for completion. MCC may also consider building a smelter at the site, depending on whether the Afghanistan government will provide phosphorus resource needed for copper smelting, he added.
The Aynak project in Afghanistan is 75 percent owned by MCC and 25 percent by Jiangxi Copper, China's top copper producer.