Second desalination plant for Namibian mines

04 April 2008

[Bloomberg, 3 April] State-owned Namibia Water Corp (NamWater) plans to construct a second desalination plant in order to meet demand for water from existing and planned uranium mines. The company's CEO, Vaino Shivute, said that the facility would be built on Namibia's Atlantic coast at a cost of N$1.5 billion ($192.1 million). The plant is expected to be commissioned in 2010 and will have the capacity to pump 25 million cubic metres of water annually. Areva's UraMin subsidiary is set to open Namibia's biggest uranium mine in July, while Bannerman Resources and Xemplar Energy are among companies exploring for uranium in the country. NamWater is already constructing a desalination plant jointly with UraMin, which is expected to be commissioned at the end of 2009. It will have the capacity to pump 20 million cubic metres per year and will serve UraMin's Trekkopje project. "Five more uranium mines are being planned and if the current price of uranium holds, we expect them to be commissioned by 2015," Shivute said.