Canada-owned Guyana Goldfields last year remained the largest private producers of gold.
In its latest report of the 2017 performance, the large scale producer reported operating costs (including depreciation and royalty) of US$752 per ounce, operating cash costs of US$433 per ounce and all-in sustaining costs of US$665 per ounce; all significant decreases compared to the prior quarter.
Last year, the Aurora mines churned out 160,500 ounces of gold, within projections.
“The company’s balance sheet continues to strengthen with a year-end closing cash balance of US$75.7 million and marketable securities fair value of US$41.1 million versus a debt balance of US$60.0 million.
Full year cash generated from operations, before working capital adjustments, of US$67.4 million.
“Significant capital investments made through the first three quarters of 2017 are paying dividends through reduced operating costs. The mining fleets, bulk emulsion delivery system, and logistics haulage fleet are now all commissioned and in-country and are generating significant operating costs savings, as evidenced in the third and fourth quarters,” the company disclosed.
Scott Caldwell, President and CEO stated: “Guyana Goldfields closed out 2017 on an operational high note, achieving record gold production along with record low operating cost metrics. Looking ahead for 2018, we are looking forward to maintaining this momentum as we deliver on the optimized life of mine plan which envisages 200,000 ounces of gold produced for 2018 and providing consistent production growth thereafter.”
According to the company, it is expected to expand the Phase 1 mill and be completed on-time and on-budget by the end of March.
“…and we expect the Phase 2 mill expansion, which would increase hard rock throughput capacity to 7,500 tonnes per day, to be completed by the end of this year. In addition, we look forward to initiating the development of the underground in the fourth quarter of this year in our effort to accelerate selective mining of higher grade stopes starting in 2019.”
The company completed last year with its strongest quarter since commencement of operations, producing 48,900 ounces.
“The record quarter was a result of higher grade delivery from the mine, as per the mine plan, combined with higher throughputs from the process plant, which averaged 6,000 tonnes per day.”
Gold has been the largest foreign currency earner for Guyana in the last decade, save for a year when rice ruled.
It has been breaking records, touching the 700,000 ounces mark in 2016 before reducing last year.
However, better prices have helped last year.
It is on a high now with US$1,328 recorded for an ounce yesterday on the world market.
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