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SASKATOON, Saskatchewan, July 5, 2012 – AREVA has started the first phase of construction to expand its McClean Lake Mill in northern Saskatchewan. AREVA and its partners are investing $150 million to upgrade the McClean Lake mill and increase its capacity so that it can process the uranium ore from the Cigar Lake mine slated to begin production late next year.
The work now under way includes the construction of a yellowcake storage facility by a joint venture of Gabriel Construction and Primrose Resources Corp. Primrose is a northern Saskatchewan-based company comprising four Métis communities – Ile a la Crosse, Beauval, Jans Bay and Cole Bay. AREVA’s policy is to maximize its business with northern businesses where feasible. Engineering work on the expansion project began in January.
The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission has approved the work now under way and is expected to render a decision regarding other aspects of the expansion later this year. The main construction phase at McClean Lake, which includes expansion of the solvent extraction and acid plants, is slated to begin in June 2013.
“AREVA is pleased that the first phase of construction has begun to expand our McClean Lake facility. We are proud that our investment in McClean Lake will benefit northern Saskatchewan businesses and create jobs for northern residents,” said Vincent Martin, CEO of AREVA Resources Canada Inc.
AREVA expects to hire more than 100 new employees by the end of 2013 mostly as a result of McClean Lake and related projects. The McClean Lake partners include AREVA, Denison Mines Inc., and OURD Canada Co. Ltd. The Cigar Lake partners include Cameco Corp., AREVA, Idimitsu and Tokyo Electric Power Co.