Thakadu Resources and Mertech Marine have launched a joint venture to recycle copper from deep sea telecommunication cables.
The partners are constructing a hub in South Africa to produce 5 200 tonnes of high-purity copper sulphate per annum. Commercial production is planned for 2024, subject to the necessary regulatory approvals.
The new plant that will be equally funded by the JV partners and will provide a ‘unique, reliable and responsible supply’ of copper sulphate for various industries in Sub-Saharan Africa, including chemicals and agriculture.
‘This partnership immediately creates a vertically integrated recycling and beneficiation business in South Africa,’ says Ruli Diseko, ceo of Thakadu.
Having pioneered the responsible supply of battery raw materials from South Africa, his company will build and operate the plant at Mertech Marine’s existing recycling facility in Gqeberha.
‘The successful development of this project will enable more exciting possibilities such as the production of copper foil for battery anodes,’ says Alwyn du Plessis, chief executive of Mertech Marine. He adds that the new facility is the first in a series of projects to catalyse Thakadu and Mertech’s complementary capabilities in a circular economy.