―High-grade, low impurity bauxite being mined at First Bauxite LLC’s Bonasika Bauxite Project.
DPI, Guyana, Friday, February 21, 2020
Guyana’s bauxite is being hailed as being of the highest quality in the world.
The assertion came from President and CEO Bill Rice whose company, First Bauxite LLC, on Thursday launched its Bonasika Bauxite Project.
Rice explained that the mining company produces high grade, non-metallurgical (low impurity) bauxite with raw ore alumina contents at 63 percent, and when sintered, over 93 percent alumina.
Sample of Guyana’s Bauxite at the Bonasika Bauxite Project.
Sintered bauxite is produced when the rock is crushed to a powdered form and then fused into round beads at a very high temperature.
“In essence what this means is that Guyana’s bauxite fills a particular niche in the alumina range, between 87-88 percent typical bauxites, which makes it a more expensive grade on the market,” Rice said.
He added that First Bauxite LLC through its local subsidiary, Guyana Industrial Mineral Incorporated, is already supplying the market with the product in a bid to develop its supply chain.
“A pilot-scale production of bauxite began in late 2018 and throughout 2019; however, full production began on January 1st 2020,” Rice stated.
So far, he noted that 20,000 tonnes of bauxite had been shipped overseas since last month and the company was looking to do much more.
“We are aiming for 200,000 tonnes to be exported by the ending of 2020. The total capacity for the company is about 320,000 tonnes a year,” Rice stated.
Minister of Natural Resources, the Hon. Raphael Trotman, who was present at Thursday’s launch, also praised the quality of Guyana’s bauxite.
“As it turns out, the bauxite being mined here, is the best quality, not only in all Guyana but all the world,” he said while congratulating the company.
“You have stayed the course, and today, as bauxite is one of the minerals that will feature in ‘green technology’, you are poised to be at the forefront of a booming economy,” the minister added.
Alumina, derived from bauxite, is widely used in a variety of industrial abrasive materials, owing to its superior hardness and strength.