Freeport turns to underground mining in 2020-2023

An activity at an underground mining site of the PT Freeport Indonesia. (PT Freeport Indonesia)

Jakarta (Indonesia Window) – PT Freeport Indonesia (PT FI), which operates in  Papua Province’s district of Tembagapura  is expected to conduct underground mining from 2020 to 2023.

Previously, the mining company whose headquarters is in Arizona, United States of America, conducted mining using the open pit method in the Grasberg mining site.


A press release from the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources received by Indonesia Window here on Sunday said that from 2020 to 2023, PT FI would run underground mining to replace the Grasberg open pit, in the DOZ, Big Gossan, DMLZ and Grasberg Block Cave areas.

The underground mining volume in 2020 is expected to reach 96 thousand tons / day; in 2021 to be 160 thousand tons / day; in 2022 to amount to 216 thousand tons / day; and in 2023 to become 217 thousand tons / day.

At present, PT Freeport Indonesia has six blocks / prospects with a mine volume of 2,756,729 kilo tons with an average copper content of 0.67 percent; gold 0.59 gr / ton; and silver 3.51 gr / ton.


The volume of mine reserves reaches 1,869,083 kilo tons with an average copper content of 1.03 percent; gold 0.79 gr / ton; and gold 4.52 gr / ton.

According to national mass media reports, the Grasberg mining site in Papua managed by PT Freeport Indonesia since 1991 is the most special one in the country because its gold and copper reserves are among the largest in the world.

The ore production from the Grasberg underground mine once reached 80,000 tons per day, making it one of the largest underground mining sites in the world.


The Grasberg’s total mineral wealth reaches 3.8 billion tons.

Reporting by Indonesia Window


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