Integrated energy company Semirara Mining and Power Corp. (SMPC) is poised to increase its coal production to 16 million metric tons (MMT) in the next two to three years in line with the national government’s thrust for power stability, optimal energy pricing and modernized infrastructure.
In 2016, SMPC achieved its highest coal production level at 11.9 million MT. Majority of its coal supply was sold to local power and cement producers.
In line with its expansion, the company said it also hired 387 personnel for key positions in its Semirara Island mine site to support its operational expansion plans.
According to SMPC President and COO Victor A. Consunji, the company still needs to fill nearly 170 positions in its mine site within the year. To meet their talent requirements, SMPC has begun conducting inter-island job caravans.
Last May, the SMPC job caravan attracted more than 100 job seekers from Semirara Island and nearby areas like Mindoro and Iloilo.
From the caravan alone, SMPC has hired 40 personnel or nearly 40 percent of the total number of applicants.
Applicants were given a tour of the mine site to become familiar with the company’s operations. Those from nearby islands were also given temporary housing during their stay.
Among the vacant positions in the Semirara Island mine site are dump truck drivers, backhoe and bulldozer operators, motor graders, water truck drivers, cadet engineers, staff auditors and staff nurses.
SMPC is the only power producer in the country that owns and mines its own fuel source (coal), which allows it to generate reliable, affordable energy for the Luzon and Visayas grids.
“We are grateful to our host community, the LGU (local government unit) and public sector partners for helping us with our recruitment efforts. With their continued assistance, we can provide more people with high-value employment,” said Consunji.
Meanwhile, Lepanto Consolidated Mining Company reported it would start production from its Benguet copper-gold project in the third quarter of 2017.
Lepanto’s engineered sanitary landfill in Mankayan, Benguet is the first of its kind in the Philippine mining industry.
In a statement, Lepanto said on-going drilling revealed previously unrecognized gold-bearing vein systems, comprised of quartz, pyrite and gold (QPG), in five areas of its copper-gold project located next to its Victoria gold project in Mankayan, Benguet.
“The QPG veins will have a very positive impact on future gold production,” it said.
With this findings, Lepanto said it would start production from the copper-gold project in the third quarter.
“For this purpose, the copper flotation plant is presently being debugged. Initial combined ore throughput from the Victoria and the Copper-Gold Project is estimated at 1,500 tons per day, ramping up to 3,000 tons per day by 2019,” it added.
Lepanto started exploration in October 2015 and has so far completed 41,000 meters of underground drilling to evaluate the copper-gold project resources at the former enargite mining area. (Lilybeth G. Ison/PNA)