Paragraph entered by Atlantic migration, in order for SteelFirst articles to display correctly on Metal Bulletin.

“Work on the PFS follows IMIC’s acquisition of Afferro Mining, whose assets included the Nkout deposit, and the signing of definitive agreements with IMIC’s strategic partners for the development of the associated infrastructure,” the London-listed company said on Tuesday January 28.

West and Central Africa-focused mining and infrastructure investor IMIC bought Cameroon-focused junior Afferro Mining in December.

Together with its strategic partner African Iron Ore Group (AIOG), IMIC had already signed a number of co-operation agreements with Chinese companies and iron ore offtakers for the flagship 2.5 billion-tonne Nkout asset ahead of the takeover of Afferro.

China Railway Eryuan Engineering Group (CREEC) is tasked with the PFS elements for the 330km rail line and the facilities at Kribi port needed to link Nkout to seaborne markets.

CREEC will undertake the engineering, procurement and construction contract following completion of a definitive feasibility study, IMIC said.

Afferro’s preliminary economic assessment for the landlocked deposit, based on a 35 million-tpy production option with shared infrastructure, gave Nkout a post-tax net present value of $4.6 billion in 2012.