Despite a recent report from BMO that said BHP should not go through with its Jansen potash mine, BHP is moving ahead with the project.
BHP is making progress on the mine. Two large drilling shafts now pierce the land, and a massive piece of German equipment, known as the Herrenknecht, has arrived. It will be used to drill the hole to create the mine. While drilling is due to start in the next couple of weeks, it will take the Herrenknecht a year to reach the potash supply about one kilometre underground. It will take another two to three years before the potash will make it above ground.
“We think by the end of 2015, we should be in the ore body and starting to build the production rooms,” Tim Cutt, president of BHP's diamonds and specialty products, told CJME radio.
"The footprint underground that we'll mine actually is about 18-20 kilometres wide and about 30 kilometres long," he said.
Once the Jansen mine is finished, it will be the largest potash mine in the world producing 10 million tons per year.