Blan­ket Mine on track

Records 23% year-on-year gold pro­duc­tion in­crease

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Business Chronicle - Oliver Kazunga

MATA­BELE­LAND South-based Blan­ket Mine pro­duced 13 430 ounces of gold in the third quar­ter ended Septem­ber 30, 2016, rep­re­sent­ing a 23 per­cent in­crease year-onyear.

In a state­ment, Aim-listed Cale­do­nia Min­ing Cor­po­ra­tion, which owns a 49 per­cent stake in Blan­ket Mine, said lat­est pro­duc­tion sta­tis­tics at the Zim­babwe op­er­a­tion show a 7,4 per­cent im­prove­ment on the sec­ond quar­ter out­put fig­ures.

“Ap­prox­i­mately 13,430 ounces of gold were pro­duced dur­ing the 3rd quar­ter, rep­re­sent­ing a 23 per cent year-on-year in­crease on the gold pro­duced in Q3 2015 (10,927 ounces) and a 7.4 per­cent quar­ter-on-quar­ter in­crease on the gold pro­duced in Q2 2016 (12,509 ounces),” said Cale­do­nia.

The min­ing cor­po­ra­tion said it re­mains on track to meet pro­duc­tion guid­ance for this year of 50,000 oz and con­tin­ues to progress to­wards its long term tar­get of 80,000 oz by 2021.

In­creased pro­duc­tiv­ity at Blan­ket Mine in the third quar­ter was a re­sult of higher-grade ma­te­ri­als mined be­low 750 me­tres, ac­cessed through the No. 6 Winze, or con­nec­tion, and an ad­di­tional de­cline de­vel­op­ment.

Cale­do­nia said in terms of the on­go­ing in­vest­ment pro­gramme at Blan­ket Mine, a new ball mill has been in­stalled and the com­mis­sion­ing process is pro­ceed­ing as an­tic­i­pated.

“The new mill will in­crease daily through­put at the Blan­ket plant by 20 per cent, from 1,500 tonnes a day to 1,800 tonnes a day, and will al­low Blan­ket to meet its plan to dou­ble 2015 pro­duc­tion to 80,000 ounces by 2021,” it said.

Com­ment­ing on the pro­duc­tion for Q3 of 2016 and on the in­stal­la­tion of the new ball mill, Cale­do­nia chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Mr Steve Cur­tis said:

“Pro­duc­tion in the third quar­ter was in line with ex­pec­ta­tions, and shows that Cale­do­nia and Blan­ket Mine re­main on track to de­liver our tar­get per­for­mance for 2016.

“Pro­duc­tion in the Quar­ter in­cludes pro­duc­tion from higher grade ma­te­rial be­low 750 me­tres, which is ac­cessed via the No. 6 Winze and an ad­di­tional de­cline de­vel­op­ment.

“This is fur­ther tes­ta­ment to the in­vest­ments Cale­do­nia has made to in­crease pro­duc­tion flex­i­bil­ity and ca­pac­ity over the past 18 months, which are now be­gin­ning to bear fruit as pro­duc­tion from be­low 750 me­tres con­tin­ues to in­crease.

“We are also pleased that the new mill, which was man­u­fac­tured lo­cally in Zim­babwe, has been in­stalled and the com­mis­sion­ing process is pro­gress­ing as ex­pected as it is an im­por­tant step in in­creas­ing our pro­duc­tion to 80,000 ounces over the next 4 years.” — @okazunga

Mr Steve Cur­tis

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