We continuously strive to unlock maximum value in our Coal Resources and Coal Reserves. The drive towards the utilisation of breakthrough technology to improve our processes and techniques throughout the value chain is a critical aspect to sustain, grow and optimally exploit our mineral assets. We review, test and implement the applicable technology solutions at operational and functional level as part of our strategy.
Exxaro broke ground on its R3.3 billion, first-of-its-kind digital mine on 5 July 2018. Since then Belfast Coal has made significant progress in its construction programme and is already producing high-grade thermal coal six months ahead of schedule. As a truly digital and connected mine, Belfast will contribute to Exxaro being a thriving coal business in the region and demonstrate Exxaro's purpose to power better lives in Africa and beyond.
The ECC Dorstfontein West underground operational life beyond the exhaustion of 2 coal seam is premised on the exploitation of 4 (lower) coal seam. In 2019, the 4 seam was successfully accessed from existing 2 seam underground infrastructure. Two parallel 7m-wide and 2m-high inclines with a slope of six degrees, connected by six crosscuts, were developed by the Dorstfontein drill-and-blast stone development team, allowing for continuous exploitation of the Exxaro Coal Central (ECC) Resource.