The Company has provisional permits for Ernesto and expects that definitive permits for the entire operation will be issued under a proposed new Brazilian mining code legislation which is in progress.
CONSTRUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS
The following summary highlights key updates from the Company's construction and development projects.
C1 Santa Luz, Brazil
Construction of the project was completed by the end of the quarter and commissioning has begun. Power will be initially provided by diesel generators though completion of a power line is well advanced and is expected to be completed in June. With all provisional permits for mining and processing in place, commissioning commenced in late April and production is expected to ramp up and be completed mid-2013. The Company has sufficient water in storage for commissioning and transition to full operations. Recently discovered water wells and continuous rain during the rainy season, which this year was delayed, have increased water availability for operations. While the mining rate is increasing during commissioning, both mined ore and stockpiled ore will be processed. The Company has accumulated a sufficient stockpile during the period pending sufficient water in storage for a significant portion of the commissioning period.
C1 Santa Luz is an open pit and potential underground operation with expected annual production of approximately 100,000 gold ounces, although only a portion of that would be produced in 2013.
Construction progress is on schedule with commissioning expected to begin in mid-2013 with completion of commissioning expected by the end of 2013. As at March 31, 2013, mine and plant were over 85% complete. Underground development at Pilar continued to progress and reached a total length of more than 11,000 metres. Underground development and work on a feasibility study also continued at Caiamar during the quarter. The ore from this satellite deposit is expected to be processed at Pilar with the higher grades offsetting the additional transportation costs. Additionally, the Company has elected to take Maria Lazarus through the development cycle on an expedited basis given exploration drilling results to date. The drilling program at Maria Lazarus is intended to increase and upgrade mineral resources.
Annual production from the mine is estimated to be 120,000 ounces of gold.
Cerro Moro, Argentina
Cerro Moro hosts an initial indicated mineral resource of 1.95 million GEO and an inferred mineral resource of 490,000 GEO.
The Company has engaged in pre-development work by way of starting a production ready decline targeting the largest of the known ore bodies, Escondida. In addition to providing flexibility to advance the timeline for development, this pre-development work would provide a platform for further exploration work and permit access to the ore body, providing greater certainty and knowledge of its physical properties and grade continuity. Technical and trade-off studies have been completed which support continuation to a feasibility level study for the project. Based on these studies, the feasibility study will consider a mine plan combining both open-pit (30%) and underground (70%) mining operations to sustain a process plant with a throughput rate of approximately 1,000 tonnes per day and an expected recovery of approximately 200,000 GEO per annum. The feasibility study is expected to be completed sometime in 2014. Depending on the outcome of the studies and subsequent construction decision, production should begin in 2016.
Most Popular Stories
- Boehner Lashes Out Against Ted Cruz, Far Right
- Bitcoin or Bad Coin? Warnings Mount Against Virtual Currency
- TFA Recruiting DACA Recipients
- Cheap Gas Drives Down U.S. Wholesale Prices Again
- Expanding Medicaid Creates Jobs: Study
- Robert Levinson Was on CIA Mission
- Producer Price Index Dropped in November
- 'Dreamers' Hope for Permanent Immigration Status
- Beyonce Releases New Album With No Marketing
- Hawaii Official Who Release Obama Certificate Only Victim of Plane Crash