TORONTO, Dec. 14, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Noranda Income Fund (TSX:NIF.UN) (the “Fund”) today provided an update regarding the successful completion of the maintenance shutdown and recommissioning of its electrolytic zinc processing facility (the “Processing Facility”) located in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, Quebec.
As previously announced, the Fund temporarily shut down operations to proceed with a proactive cell repair program and a cell-by-cell integrity assessment aimed at mitigating risk in the cellhouse. The shutdown lasted approximately six weeks, following which the facility went through a recommissioning phase. The Fund expects to benefit from the findings of its cell-by-cell integrity assessment as it continues the execution of its repair and maintenance program.
“Various levels of repairs were made to the cells in the cellhouse and all cells were thoroughly cleaned and inspected. Together, the repairs and cleaning are aimed at stabilizing cellhouse operating conditions while our longer-term cellhouse revitalization plan is being finalized,” said Paul Einarson, Chief Executive Officer of Canadian Electrolytic Zinc Limited, Noranda Income Fund’s Manager.
“In addition to our repairs and maintenance strategy, we continue to address the labour and operational efficiency challenges we face due to the tight labour market. We are optimistic for the future after having successfully completed the repair and maintenance shutdown and given some of the positive results we’ve seen this year due to our proactive labour strategies,” concluded Mr. Einarson.
The Fund remains steadfast in its commitment to unitholders that despite unprecedented challenges across the resource industry brought on by global supply chain challenges and labour shortages, the objective remains the same – to pursue opportunities to create value for unitholders. To that end, the Board of Trustees and management will continue to focus on solutions that are practical and implementable to deliver on that objective.
Cellhouse Revitalization Project
While the Fund believes the cellhouse repairs conducted during the maintenance shutdown will contribute to stabilizing near-term cellhouse operating conditions, they will not fully address underlying operational issues. The ongoing performance of cellhouse operations will depend on the eventual rate of deterioration of the cells.
As previously disclosed, evaluations undertaken thus far have led to the conclusion that a replacement of all cells will be necessary to stabilize and improve operating conditions for the long-term, in addition to planned crane replacements. The cost of a full cell and crane replacement is currently estimated to be approximately US$100 million and replacement would not commence before 2024. Since its last update, the Fund has been advancing its long-term cellhouse revitalization plan, including work on financing options, engineering plans and the procurement of long-lead items. More updates will follow once the plan has been finalized. The project timeline may be influenced by supply chain constraints and by the securing of appropriate financing.
Certain information in this press release, including statements regarding the Fund’s ability to repair its existing cellhouse, to finance and realize a full cell and crane replacement and the expected impact of such repairs and replacement on production and sales, is “forward-looking information” within the meaning of Canadian provincial securities laws and “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Canadian provincial securities laws. In some cases, but not necessarily in all cases, forward-looking information can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as “plans”, “targets”, “expects” or “does not expect”, “is expected”, “an opportunity exists”, “is positioned”, “estimates”, “intends”, “assumes”, “anticipates” or “does not anticipate” or “believes”, or variations of such words and phrases or state that certain actions, events or results “may”, “could”, “would”, “might”, “will” or “will be taken”, “occur” or “be achieved”. Statements containing forward-looking information are not historical facts but instead represent management’s expectations, estimates and projections regarding future events.
Forward-looking information is necessarily based on a number of opinions, assumptions and estimates that, while considered reasonable as of the date of this press release, are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties, assumptions and other factors that may cause the actual results, level of activity, performance or achievements to be materially different from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking information, including but not limited to the factors described in greater detail in the “Risk Factors” section of the Fund’s Annual Information Form dated March 30, 2022 for the year ended December 31, 2021 and the Fund’s other periodic filings available at www.sedar.com. These factors are not intended to represent a complete list of the factors that could affect the Fund; however, these factors should be considered carefully. There can be no assurance that such estimates and assumptions will prove to be correct. The forward-looking statements contained in this press release are made as of the date of this press release, and the Fund expressly disclaims any obligation to update or alter statements containing any forward-looking information, or the factors or assumptions underlying them, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.
About the Noranda Income Fund
Noranda Income Fund is an income trust whose units trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol “NIF.UN”. Noranda Income Fund owns the electrolytic zinc processing facility and ancillary assets (the “Processing Facility”) located in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, Quebec. The Processing Facility is the second-largest zinc processing facility in North America and the largest zinc processing facility in eastern North America, where the majority of zinc customers are located. It produces refined zinc metal and various by-products from sourced zinc concentrates. The Processing Facility is operated and managed by Canadian Electrolytic Zinc Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Glencore Canada Corporation. Further information about Noranda Income Fund can be found at: www.norandaincomefund.com.
|For more information:||Paul Einarson
Chief Executive Officer of Canadian Electrolytic Zinc Limited,
Noranda Income Fund’s Manager
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