Continental Coal has been granted a Mining Right for its De Wittekrans Coal Project by the Department of Mineral Resources.

Continental Coal, an ASX-listed South African thermal coal company, submitted its application for the Mining Right in 2010 and submitted an application for an integrated water use license approval last year, which is expected to be approved early next year.

“We are delighted with this development,” says Don Turvey, Continental CEO. “The granting of the Mining Right for our De Wittekrans Coal Project represents a significant milestone for the project and the Company ahead of taking the project into production over the next 12 months.”

Annual production of the De Wittekrans Project is estimated at 3.6-million tonnes per annum of thermal coal over the initial 30 year mine life.

Optimization studies completed during the year have determined a phased development of the project, with an initial 7 year opencast mining operation and underground development. This will be Continental’s fourth producing mine and has the potential to double the annual run of mine production and export and domestic thermal coal sales.