Engineering & Mining Journal

JUN 2019

Engineering and Mining Journal - Whether the market is copper, gold, nickel, iron ore, lead/zinc, PGM, diamonds or other commodities, E&MJ takes the lead in projecting trends, following development and reporting on the most efficient operating pr

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REGIONAL NEWS - AFRICA JUNE 2019 • E&MJ 29 www.e-mj.com In late March, Alrosa CEO Sergey Iva- nov said the Russian company's invest- ment was contingent on retaining control over its projects. "Of course, we'll only be ready to participate in projects in cases where we can have management control and operational control of the assets," Ivanov told Reuters. It is quite likely then that the remain- ing indigenization requirements will go, too. Chitando, the minister of mining, told E&MJ on the sidelines of the Min- ing Indaba in Cape Town earlier this year, "We are very clear about needing to at- tract foreign investment in mining. We are working on getting the right policy formula to attract outside capital." He added that a severe US dollar short- age that hampered mining companies' abil- ity to pay staff and order capital equipment would soon be resolved. Zimbabwe has used the US dollar as its currency since 2009, when it abandoned its own monetary unit to end an era of hyper-inflation. A shortage of physical dollars in the country is hampering business from op- erating. The country will however rein- troduce its own currency soon, and this should end the need to carry out dol- lar-based transactions, Chitanda said. Perseus Building Yaouré Gold Mine in Côte d'Ivoire Perseus Mining is proceeding with con- struction of open-pit mining operations at its Yaouré gold project in central Côte d'Ivoire. The project is planned to pro- duce an average of 215,000 ounces per year (oz/y) of gold for the first five years, with average all-in site costs of $734/oz. Capital costs to develop the project are estimated at $265 million. Probable ore reserves at Yaouré are es- timated at 26.8 million metric tons (mt) grading 1.76 grams/mt gold and con- taining 1.52 million oz of gold. Perseus is planning an extensive exploration pro- gram to add to Yaouré's currently defined nine-year mine life. Perseus has also prepared a scoping study for a potential underground mining operation at Yaouré. Further resource drill- ing and technical studies are required to en- able definition of underground ore reserves. The company's decision to proceed with construction for open-pit mining opened the way for execution of engineer- ing and supply contracts between Perseus and Lycopodium. Perseus has collaborated with Lycopodium in the past, most nota- bly on the development of the company's Sissingué gold mine, also in Côte d'Ivoire, which was commissioned in early 2018. A "Notice of Award" for the engineer- ing and supply contracts was issued to Lycopodium on January 10, 2019, and since that time, Lycopodium and Per- seus's in-house development team, acting in anticipation of an imminent positive de- velopment decision, have worked toward commencement of full-scale development. Detailed engineering has progressed, and supply contracts, including a contract with Outotec for manufacture and supply of the SAG and ball mills, have been con- ditionally awarded to suppliers of a large proportion of the plant and equipment re- quired for the processing facility. These or- ders will be confirmed, fixing approximate- ly 50% of the capital budget and enabling development to proceed on schedule. Plant throughput at Yaouré is planned at 3.3 million mt/y. Under the terms of the Lycopodium contract, first gold is due to be poured by January 23, 2021, although a "stretch target" involving an earlier gold pour in December 2020 is being pursued. Avesoro Going Underground at New Liberty in Liberia Avesoro Resources has reported positive results from a prefeasibility study (PFS) of its New Liberty gold operations in Liberia, including plans to transition from open-pit to underground mining. The plan to go un- derground at New Liberty reflects a signifi- cant improvement in the Avesoro's level of confidence in the mineral resource follow- ing an extensive drilling program during the 12 months to early March 2019. Highlights of the New Liberty PFS include a seven-year mine life extension to 2029, based on current proven and probable mineral reserves, with potential to extend further via drilling of prospec- tive satellite prospects across the 1,394- km 2 exploration portfolio surrounding the New Liberty mine. Proven and probable mineral reserves across this land package currently total 17 million metric tons (mt) containing 1,365,000 ounces (oz) of gold at a grade of 2.49 grams/mt. The New Liberty mine mineral resource remains open down dip, while the Ndab- lama satellite mineral resource remains open both down dip and along strike. Additional resource development drilling has the potential to increase the resource base, and infill drilling has the potential to convert a further portion of the existing inferred resources to indicated. Avesoro's New Liberty PFS forecasts life-of-mine gold recovery of 1,259,446 oz over an 11-year mine life. Total develop- ment capital cost is estimated at $35.9 million. Average life-of-mine all-in sustain- ing cash costs are estimated at $862/oz. New Liberty gold production in 2019 is forecast at between 100,000 and 110,000 oz. Lucara Recovers 1,758-carat Diamond From Karowe Lucara Diamond Corp. announced the recovery of a 1,758-carat diamond from its 100% owned Karowe Diamond Mine located in Botswana. One of the largest diamonds in recorded history, the largest diamond recovered in Botswana, and the largest diamond to be mined at Karowe to date, the unbroken 1,758-carat stone was recovered through Lucara's state-of-the-art XRT circuit, commissioned in April 2015. Weighing close to 352 grams and measuring 83 mm x 62 mm x 46 mm, the diamond has been characterized as near gem of variable quality, including domains of high-quality white gem. Further detailed analysis is ongoing. Lucara recovers a 1,758-ct black diamond from the Karowe Diamond mine.

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