GOLD output at Mwana Africa’s Freda Rebecca mine rose by 23 percent to 16,555 ounces during the second quarter to September 30, from 13,505 oz during the same period last year, the company said on Monday.
Tonnes milled rose by 21.3 percent to 319,768 tonnes while the average feed grade was nine percent higher at 2.25 grammes/tonne compared to 2.07 g/t in the first quarter.
Gold recovery for the quarter was 4.2 percent higher at 80 percent compared with 76.8 percent previously.
Cash costs for the quarter under review fell 18 percent to $880/oz from $1,078/oz, while all-in sustaining costs decreased by 17 percent from $1,283/oz in the first quarter to $1,061/oz.
The company said this demonstrated the mine’s capability to remain profitable in a lower gold price environment after receiving an average price of $1,272/oz which was two percent lower than previous quarter.
“At the Freda Rebecca gold mine, gold production increased quarter on quarter with higher grades of ore drawn from underground and the mill throughput being augmented by the processing of surface material.
“The modifications implemented in the previous quarters appear to be bearing fruit and we look forward to maintaining a more consistent operating performance in the coming quarters,” the company said.
Production of nickel in concentrate at its Trojan Nickel Mine was five percent higher at 1,989t due to a three percent increase in the tonnes mined to 160,741 tonnes as the refurbishment of equipment programmes was completed.
Head grade was two percent lower at 1.496 percent compared to 1.519 percent in the first quarter attributed to the temporary mining of lower grade massive ores in accordance with BNC’s mine plan.
There was a five percent increase in average nickel price received to $18,592/t.
Recoveries were down two percent to 82.5 percent compared to 84.1 percent in the first quarter while Nickel sales were seven percent higher at 2,008t. Cash costs increased by one percent to $13,900/t and all-in sustaining costs decreased by one to $14,566/t.
Mwana said the operation’s return to profitability had allowed it to reverse previous provisions for deferred tax of $4 million for the six months to September, carried in the accounts as an asset although the reversal was an accounting adjustment with no cash flow impact.Advertisement
The company said preparatory work for the restart of the $26 million smelter to resume operations during the first half of next year was progressing well with the core project team in place adding that key equipment orders and contracts had been made.
“The submission to the Environmental Management Authority will be made during October 2014,” the company said, adding that financing discussions were advancing.
At Trojan, the company said it continued to ramp up production while the tonnage mined increased as a result of the refurbishment programme which is expected to be completed in December 2015.