IMP - Implats First Quarter Production Report13 Nov 2009
IMP - Implats First Quarter Production Report                                   
Impala Platinum Holdings Limited                                                
(Incorporated in the Republic of South Africa)                                  
(Registration No. 1957/001979/06)                                               
ISIN: ZAE000083648                                                              
JSE Share Code: IMP                                                             
LSE Share Code: IPLA                                                            
ADR Code: IMPUY                                                                 
("Implats" or "the company")                                                    
IMPLATS FIRST QUARTER PRODUCTION REPORT                                         
FOR PERIOD 01 JULY TO 30 SEPTEMBER 2009                                         
Unaudited        Unaudited                     
Operational                       Quarter ended    Quarter ended                
information                       30 September     30 September                 
                                 2009             2008                          
Implats Gross                                                                   
Refined Production                                                              
Platinum              000oz       413              390                          
Palladium             000oz       266              218                          
Rhodium               000oz       63               52                           
Nickel                000tonne    3.48             3.33                         
Tonnes Milled         000         2,997            4,026                        
Grade (6E)            g/t         4.61             4.59                         
% Merensky                        39%              47%                          
Refined Platinum      000oz       180              243                          
Tonnes Milled         000         393              394                          
Grade (6E)            g/t         4.41             4.26                         
Platinum in           000oz       19               18                           
Tonnes Milled         000         869              520                          
Grade (6E)            g/t         3.52             3.40                         
Platinum in Matte     000oz       36               17                           

Tonnes Milled         000         577              515                          
Grade (6E)            g/t         3.86             3.86                         
Platinum in           000oz       26               22                           
Refined Platinum      000oz       233              147                          
Prices Achieved                                                                 
Platinum              $/oz        1,211            1,755                        
Palladium             $/oz        260              396                          
Rhodium               $/oz        1,509            8,292                        
Nickel                $/tonne     16,330           19,629                       
Average exchange      R/$         7.82             7.75                         
It is a great sadness that 12 of our colleagues lost their lives at work during 
the quarter under review.  On the 20th July 2009, nine employees tragically lost
their lives in a massive fall-of-ground incident in one of the mechanised       
sections at 14 Shaft in Rustenburg.  A tri-partite investigation involving      
Implats, the DMR and the unions, together with an independent review, was       
conducted and an official DMR enquiry is still in progress.  The company has    
taken the decision to reduce bord widths to six metres across all Rustenburg    
mechanised sections in order to significantly reduce the operational risk.      
Another two of our colleagues died following a methane explosion at 14 Shaft and
a further one lost his life in a fall-of-ground incident at 8 Shaft.  The board 
of directors and the management team extend their sincere condolences to the    
families, friends and colleagues of these employees.                            
Despite this set back to our vision of zero harm we remain committed to         
achieving a safe working environment.  The company continues to focus on        
creating and promoting a safety culture within each employee and vigorously     
enforcing compliance with our Platinum Rules.  The new safety bonus system      
introduced during the latter half of FY2009 has started to produce results.  To 
date, 15 areas have achieved 90 days without a lost-time injury whilst another  
10 areas have reached 180 days.                                                 
Higher production from the Zimbabwean operations, increased deliveries to Impala
Refining Services ("IRS") and changes in the pipeline, as stocks were cleared   
during the strike action, resulted in a 6% increase in gross refined platinum   
production period on period to 413,000 ounces.  Palladium and rhodium rose by   
22% and 20% respectively.                                                       
At the Lease Area tonnes milled declined by 26% to just under 3 million due to  
the closure of all mechanised sections following the 14 Shaft incident and the  
two-week strike during September.  As a result platinum production declined by  
similar levels with the loss of 25,000 ounces from the safety stoppages and a   
further 50,000 ounces due to the industrial action.  The change in the mining   
layout in the mechanised sections will further impact production in the current 
year by another 25,000 ounces.                                                  
The closure of the mechanised sections impacted Merensky production which fell  
by 17% to 39% of throughput.  Despite this the overall grade at the operation   
improved as a result of the focus on quality mining.  On-reef development       
continues to receive the attention of the operational team.                     
As a result of the 14 Shaft incident and the strike, production for FY2010 is   
expected to be down by 100,000 ounces of platinum to 850,000.  Annualised       
production of 1 million ounces of platinum will be achieved within the next five
years.  The lower production volumes will adversely impact unit costs during the
first half of the current year.                                                 
Production at Marula was also impacted by the strike action which resulted in   
output falling by approximately 2,000 ounces of platinum.  The grade improved   
with the ongoing move to the conventional mining method.  Development remains   
key to further improvements.  It is expected that Marula will deliver           
approximately 85,000 ounces of platinum in concentrate in the current financial 
year and 100,000 in FY2011.                                                     
At Zimplats mill tonnage increased by 67% in line with the ramp-up of production
from the Phase 1 expansion project.  The Ngezi concentrator was successfully    
commissioned in late July and reached design throughput by the end of September.
The development of the Portal 4 underground mine remains on schedule to reach   
full production by mid 2011.  In the interim period ore will be sourced from the
surface ore stockpile.                                                          
Platinum production in matte rose by 113% year on year to 36,000 ounces due to  
the ramp-up and the fact that output in the previous period a year ago was      
impacted by a smelter shutdown.  Production in FY2010 is expected to reach      
170,000 ounces of platinum in matte with full annualised production of 180,000  
ounces being achieved in the following year.                                    
The commissioning of the Wedza phase 5 expansion at Mimosa which entailed the   
extension of milling and tailings handling capacity was completed.  This        
resulted in a 12% increase in tonnes milled and a concomitant increase in       
platinum in concentrate production to 26,000 ounces.  The mine is now operating 
at steady-state capacity of 100,000 ounces of platinum in concentrate per annum.
IRS` refined platinum production, which includes material from Marula, Zimplats 
and Mimosa, rose by 59% to 233,000 ounces quarter on quarter.  This was largely 
due to increased receipts, particularly from the Zimbabwean operations, Two     
Rivers, Blue Ridge and Smokey Hills and pipeline movements as mentioned         
CASH MANAGEMENT                                                                 
Recent improvements in US dollar-based PGM pricing have been offset by the      
strength of the rand and cash preservation remains a priority.  Cash net of debt
at the end June 2009 of R1.36 billion has reduced to a net debt after cash      
position of R0.13 billion at the end of the quarter.  The final dividend        
payment, a major cash outflow during the period, amounted to R1.2 billion       
excluding STC.                                                                  
Enquiries should be directed to:                                                
Bob Gilmour                                                                     
Group Executive Corporate Relations                                             
+27 11 731 9013/12                                                              
+27 82 453 7100                                                                                                               
13 November 2009                                                                
Issued by sponsor: Deutsche Securities (SA) (Proprietary) Limited               
Date: 13/11/2009 12:00:01 Produced by the JSE SENS Department.                  
The SENS service is an information dissemination service administered by the    
JSE Limited (`JSE`). The JSE does not, whether expressly, tacitly or            
implicitly, represent, warrant or in any way guarantee the truth, accuracy or   
completeness of the information published on SENS. The JSE, their officers,     
employees and agents accept no liability for (or in respect of) any direct,     
indirect, incidental or consequential loss or damage of any kind or nature,     
howsoever arising, from the use of SENS or the use of, or reliance on,          
information disseminated through SENS.