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Written Answers. - Future of Tara Mines.

Wednesday, 6 February 2002

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 547 No. 4

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 45. Mr. Broughan Information on Thomas P. Broughan Zoom on Thomas P. Broughan  asked the Minister for the Marine and Natural Resources Information on Frank Fahey Zoom on Frank Fahey  the most recent discussions he has had with the owners of Tara Mines regarding their plans for the future of the mine and the ore base; if he has received a date for a proposed reopening of the mine; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3486/02]

Minister for the Marine and Natural Resources (Mr. Fahey): Information on Frank Fahey Zoom on Frank Fahey I last met members of Tara Mines management team on 8 January 2002. They reported that the company was completing a comprehensive review of zinc market conditions and future plans relating to the mine.

Following my meeting with them, the company completed its review and issued a press release on 24 January. The review highlights a significant need to improve the mine's technical condition including the immediate need to carry out additional mine development and maintenance work. This improvement work will take approximately three months. I have been assured that Tara Mines is committed to restarting the mine as soon as possible. It expects to be in a position to submit its re-opening proposals to its parent company, Outokumpu, for approval on 15 March. If Outokumpu approves of the proposals, Tara Mines has advised that pre-production work would commence immediately and a resumption of full production from the mine would be expected in June 2002.

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