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ICT equipment donated for online learning

Bucim and Borov Dol mines have donated €8,400 worth of modern ICT equipment to students and primary schools in Radovish, Konce, v. Oraovica and v. Injevo to ensure the smooth functioning of the education system in the emergencies and conditions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic as local schools move towards online learning. 

In order to help students and schools cope as successfully as possible with the present situation, Borov Dol procured tablets and internet connections for students from socially disadvantaged families at the Goce Delcev primary school in the municipality of Konce. Bucim donated computer equipment for the needs of the primary schools: Krste Petkov Misirkov in Radovish, Cyril and Methodius in v. Oraovica, and Orce Nikolov in v. Injevo.

With these donations, the mines are helping to make distance learning possible for all families and for students to be able to attend online classes during this academic year.

Supporting education is part of our social policy, and we are constantly investing in the development of this area, in order to help young people receive an education, provide support to schools whenever they need it, especially now during the corona crisis when help is most needed,” said Nikoljacho Nikolov, Deputy General Manager, Bucim.

Education is important for the development of society. We recognize the importance of support and cooperation with our society, and consciously identify the areas we need to focus on. Taking into account the changes in the curriculum, and that there are students who lack the digital devices and internet access necessary to participate in online teaching, we have provided these solutions in order for online school to operate smoothly and ensure equal learning conditions for all children,” said Pavlo Krivinsky, General Manager of Borov Dol.

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Bucim receives “A” integrated environmental permit

The copper mine Bucim DOO Radovish was awarded an “A” integrated environmental permit from the Ministry of the Environment and Physical Planning after having met these requirements with its operational plan. 

Receipt of this integrated environmental permit confirms that the Bucim mine is in full compliance with all local and global best practices. The mine is dedicated to complying with and following the state’s requirements for environmental standards, and is prepared to take all necessary measures to minimize the impact of its operations on the environment.

The award of the “A” integrated environmental permit is a result of implementation of the mine’s operational plan and application of the highest standards for environmental protection which the mine will continue to apply in the future. This environmental permit covers and lists all working conditions of the mine in order to maintain the highest level of control over any possible negative impact of the company’s operations on the environment. The operating conditions of the mine are determined and assessed by Macedonian legislation, from the best available work processes, the monitoring process, control of the production process, waste management, to the closure and conservation of the installation.

“The ‘A’ integrated environmental permit is a confirmation of our efforts and investments in the field of environmental protection, compliance with best practices, and also a guarantee that we will continue to apply the highest standards for environmental protection,” said Nikoljacho Nikolov, Deputy General Director of Bucim.

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Borov Dol supports infrastructural developments in Konce

The new copper mine, Borov Dol Radovish, donated funds to a new municipal road construction project currently in the development stage. The project aims to completely reconstruct the local road that connects the villages of Gabrevci, Dolni Lipovikj and Gorni Lipovikj with Konce. 

Reconstruction of the existing local road infrastructure in the municipality of Konce will be economically beneficial for the region as it will facilitate both the transport of goods and services and growing social connections between the villages and the Konce. Modernization of the road infrastructure will also enable easier and safer travel for the population living and working in this area of the municipality. 

“Supporting projects that improve the economic prospects and the quality of life of the citizens in the municipalities in which we operate is an important component of our social policy. Society is dependent on the road infrastructure, and supporting the economic growth of our local communities is a common interest,” added Pavlo Krivinsky, General Manager of Borov Dol.

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Bucim and Borov Dol announce 1H 2020 operational results

During 1H 2020, Bucim processed 2.2 million tonnes of ore (106% of 1H 2019), with copper content of 0.166 % (85% vs. quality of ore processed in 1H 2019), gold content of 0.151 g/t (52% vs. quality of ore processed in 1H of 2019). This corresponded to 14,603 tonnes of dry copper concentrate from ore raw materials (90% of 1H 2019 volume), containing 3,066 tonnes of copper (90% of 1H 2019 volume), 170 kg of gold (48 % of 1H 2019 volume), and 442 kg of silver (95% of 1H 2019 volume). During 1H 2020, Bucim’s SX/EW plant produced 335 tonnes of cathode copper of 99.99% quality (95 % of 1H 2019 volume).

The company achieved a positive financial result for 1H of 2020: a pre-tax profit of €4.7 million (47% vs. comparable figure for 1H of 2019). Bucim paid an advance taxes to the budget of North Macedonia in the amount of €858,000.  The company paid concession fees of €447,000 for the use of mineral resources in 1H of 2020, 78% of which was paid into the budget of the municipality of Radovish and 22% into the federal government budget.

The average monthly wage during 1H 2020 was €547 (102% compared to 1H of 2019).

Expenditures on socially responsible programs reached €30,000 during 1H of 2020 (the same amount as in 1H 2019). The Bucim mine provided financial support for the development of young musical talents and athletes, cultural programs, schools, kindergartens, sports clubs and healthcare institutions.

In addition, in order to support North Macedonia’s fight against Covid-19, Bucim donated €40,000 to the special donor account the Ministry of Health, €10,000 to the local health centers in the municipalities of Radovish, Shtip and Strumica, and €5,000 to the Red Cross of Radovish to support socially disadvantaged families from the municipalities of Radovish and Konce in order to help them better cope with the new reality caused by the Covid-19 outbreak. In addition to the financial assistance, the mine donated 650 medical protective masks for the needs of the local institutions in the municipality of Radovish and 150 protective suits to the Clinical Hospital in Stip.

During 1H 2020, €66,000 were invested in occupational safety and health (87% vs. 1H 2019) including the cost of employee PPE, hygiene products, certification of technical equipment, technical inspections of equipment, fire prevention measures, employee medical examinations, purchases of safety materials, staff training, and measurement of microclimate conditions in the workplace.

During the first half of 2020, in order to manage the threat of coronavirus, the mine took a series of increased measures to protect the health and safety of its employees. The precautions are fully observed, and personal hygiene and protective products are regularly procured. €7,271 were spent for the purchase of hygiene items, protective masks and gloves during the first half of 2020.

The costs for repairs and maintenance of technological equipment in the first half of 2020 amounted to €1.6 million (94% vs. 1H of 2019). This includes overhauls of the flotation plant and ongoing maintenance performed on the leaching plant and surface pit.

During 1H 2020, investments to support production capacity (procurement of equipment, machinery, construction, etc.) reached €502,000 (134% vs. 1H 2019).

A total of €52,400 were invested (175% vs. 1H 2019) in environmental protection programs, such as re-cultivation of the dam of the tailing dump in the required area, environmental monitoring services – including both surface and groundwater, atmospheric air, environmental noise, industrial emissions and discharges, and waste management services, as well as environmental third party audits and assessments. During 1H 2020, Bucim successfully passed all of its inspections by the state environmental authorities. 

During the first half of this year, Bucim confirmed its compliance with international ISO standards by successfully passing an internal annual audit to confirm the company’s compliance with the international ISO standards 9001, 14001, and 45001. The auditors confirmed that there was no disagreement nor any non-compliance with the requirements of these standards, and that the mine operates consciously and responsibly in accordance with international best practices.

The copper mine Bucim DOO Radovish marked 1H 2020 with the completion of exploitation of the mineral resources from the Chukar 2 ore body, in accordance with Bucim’s annual production plan. During 2H 2020, in order to ensure continuity in the production process and optimal utilization of the copper ore in Bucim, mineral raw materials will be exploited from the North-East 2 ore body which contains proven other quantities of mineral reserves. The ore reserves from the North-East 2 ore body will ensure the exploitation and processing of mineral resources and the smooth operation of the Bucim mine until the start of production at the Borov Dol mine.

Borov Dol’s development

During 1H 2020, the company focused entirely on meeting its targets for launching production at Borov Dol, which will extend the life of the existing Bucim project.

The situation arising from Covid-19 resulted in a change to the construction schedule for the facilities, and a delay to the planned start of the production at Borov Dol. In the schedule for the construction of the main technological facilities, there has been a delay of three months. This is due to the restrictions imposed during 1H 2020 (introduction of a curfew, restrictions on movement, self-isolation of workers and closed borders for foreign equipment suppliers). Given the current state and dynamics of construction, the Borov Dol mine plans to start production in December 2020.

During the reporting period, the Borov Dol mine continued with construction of the main technological facilities and started with construction of the infrastructure facilities. These were realized in the following volumes: conveyor line – 70%; power lines of 20 kV – 95%; primary crushing facility and a closed ore warehouse – 90%; infrastructure facilities – 35% .

Total investments in the Borov Dol project during 1H of 2020 reached €15.3 million (compared to €8.1 million during 1H 2019).

During 1H 2020, Borov Dol invested a total of €7.2 million in purchases of necessary equipment (compared to €2.5 million during 1H 2019), €2.1 million for construction work, and €4.9 million for excavation of the ore body (compared to €5.2 million during 1H 2019).

During the first half of 2020, Borov Dol continued with earth excavation work, during which 4.6 million tons of rock material were excavated (compared to 6.6 million tons in 1H 2019).

During 1H 2020, Borov Dol invested €119,200 in the areas of occupational safety and health, environmental protection initiatives, and socially responsible practices. Borov Dol provided financial support for cultural and historical initiatives and development of infrastructure projects in the local municipalities of Radovish and Konce.  In addition to regular environmental monitoring and biodiversity monitoring, Borov Dol placed bird nests around the concession area to preserve biodiversity in the local area. Preparation of documentation for submitting an application for obtaining an A-integrated environmental permit has begun.

During 1H 2020, Borov Dol paid an average monthly gross salary paid per employee of €1,069 (an increase of 5.8% vs. 1H 2019).

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Bucim and Borov Dol expand their comprehensive fight against COVID-19

As constructive partners of their local communities, the mines strive to actively contribute towards the fight against the Covid-19 virus. DPTU Bucim DOO Radovish donated vehicle disinfection systems to PE Plavaja – Radovish. DPTU Borov Dol DOOEL Radovish donated protective masks and antiseptics to the Municipal Red Cross – Radovish. These materials will be used for preventive measures for the inhabitants of the Konce and Radovish municipalities.

These donations aim to provide additional protection for local residents and reduce the risk of spread of the virus in the municipalities of Radovish and Konce. Vehicle disinfection systems will be installed at both entrances of the city of Radovish, as additional precautions to limit exposure to the virus. Protective masks and antiseptics will be distributed to the inhabitants of Konce and Radovish. These will be distributed by Municipal Red Cross – Radovish to families in need. 

Since the beginning of the pandemic, the Bucim and Borov Dol mines have taken increased precautions to protect the health of all of their employees while ensuring business continuity. The mines have fully implemented the measures and recommendations of the World Health Organization, the ministry of health, and the government of North Macedonia. In order to reduce the risk of exposure, the cabins of technical vehicles, equipment, buses and work premises are regularly disinfected and all employees are provided on a regular basis with antiseptics and protective face masks. In addition, a limited entry system was introduced for external collaborators and visitors. Employees with children up to the age of 10 and employees with chronic diseases have been relieved of their work responsibilities. All events and meetings have been canceled and the restaurant’s dining schedule was altered in order to avoid gatherings large numbers of people in one place at one time.

Bucim and Borov Dol are pleased to report that to date there has not been a single case of Covid-19 has been reported amongst their employees.

The company’s actions are carried out in accordance with all recommendations. Our employees are provided with a safe working environment with all available precautions. In dealing with one of the largest ever global health crises, the Covid-19 pandemic, cooperation is essential. We recognize the importance of supporting and cooperating with our local communities, particularly in such extraordinary circumstances. We are focused on contributing to the preservation of the health and safety of our employees and local residents to jointly overcoming the challenges presented by the coronavirus pandemic,” explained Nikoljaco Nikolov, Deputy General Manager of Bucim.

“In Borov Dol, all protective measures have been taken. Our work has been reorganized in accordance with all necessary precautions in order to protect the health of our employees and to maintain the continuity of our operations. We also take equal care for the local community in which we operate. The concern for society is deeply rooted in our work, especially in these newly challenging times fighting the Covid-19 virus,” added Pavlo Krivinsky, General Manager of Borov Dol.

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Bucim mine will continue to operate until launch of Borov Dol mine

The copper mine Bucim DOO Radovish marked the first half of 2020 with completion of exploitation of the mineral resources from the Chukar 2 ore body, in accordance with its annual production plan.

During the month of July, there will be a planned slowdown of the production process in the Bucim mine so that construction work may be performed to build the conveyor belt that will connect the Borov Dol and Bucim mines. During the time of suspension of production, about 40 employees will be put on leave in July, but they will still receive 70% of their full salaries, certainly in previous agreement with them. This month will be also used for planned regular overhaul of the flotation plant. From 1 July to 1 August, activities will be carried out for necessary, ongoing repairs of the flotation plant and in parallel, preparations will also be made for further exploitation of copper ore from the North-East 2 ore body.

Based on detailed geological research performed previously, it has been proven that there are other quantities of mineral reserves identified in the North-East 2 ore body. This will ensure the exploitation and processing of mineral resources and smooth operations of the Bucim mine.

The explored mineral reserves will enable the continuous production process in the mine through the end of 2020. We will use the upcoming period for intensive preparation for the exploitation of mineral resources from the North-East 2 ore body which will ensure continuity in the production process and optimal utilization of the copper ore in Bucim, ” said Nikoljacho Nikolov, Deputy General Manager of Bucim.