22 Jul 2010 15:41

Kazakhmys joins LBMA

ALMATY. July 22 (Interfax) - Kazakhmys Plc, Kazakhstan's biggest copper maker, has become a member of the London Bullion Market Association (LBMA).

Kazakhmys was invited to join the LBMA after successfully completing tests on silver ingots from the group's Balkhash metals complex, the company said in a statement.

The testing was conducted by independent experts, the statement says. The company also met LBMA's criteria for productive capacity and finances.

The company invested $710,000 in the unit for pouring the silver ingots. Each of the ingots weighs 1,000 oz (31.1 kg). The unit has capacity to pour 400 tonnes of ingots a month.

The production line was set up on the summer of 2009, the company told Interfax.

Final installation work and personnel training was conducted by specialists from Italian IEKO, and specialists from Kazakhmys underwent preparatory training on installation of the unit. The company also added staff to service the induction over used in the silver pouring. The Balkhash complex continues to manufacture gold ingots and silver grain.

"We are very pleased that Kazakhmys is now a member of LBMA. Successful completion of the international certification process is the end result of a long-term program to improve production technology and raise profitability of our precious metals operations," the CEO of Kazakhmys Corporation Eduard Ogai is quoted in the statement as saying.

Kazakhmys PLC is a leading international natural resources group, listed in the UK and Kazakhstan, with significant interests in copper, gold, zinc, silver, power generation and petroleum.