The Midwest uranium project in Canada has been “shelved” due to the current economic climate, Areva and partners said.
The partners in Midwest are: Areva (69.16%), Denison-Mines (25.17%) and OURD (5.67%).
The decision was made due to the recent drop in the price of uranium and increased operating costs in the region due to the regulatory approval process. “If it were launched today, the project’s profitability would be uncertain,” Areva said.
According to Denison, based on current estimates the capital costs have increased by some 50% from the previous estimate of $C435 million ($353 million).
Midwest, located in Saskatchewan Province, was initially planned for 2010 with a production capacity of 2300tU per year. The project status will be reviewed every 6 months and so that the project can be developed quickly when economic conditions improve, the ongoing environmental assessment and engineering at the Midwest site will be completed. For 2009, the total expenditure on the project is estimated to be $C12.3 million ($9.5 million).
Denison has also suspended operations at its Tony M mine in Ticaboo, Utah and has announced it expects to significantly reduce its exploration and capital expenditures next year.
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