Asanko Gold announces production results for the fourth quarter and full year of 2017 from the Asanko Gold Mine (AGM), located in Ghana, West Africa.
“The Asanko Gold Mine delivered another solid quarterly performance, producing 51 550 ounces and achieving 2017 revised guidance with full year production of 205 047 ounces,” says Peter Breese, Asanko Gold President and Chief Executive Officer.
Highlights for the quarter include the opening up and commencement of ore mining operations at our second satellite deposit, Dynamite Hill, record milling rates by the processing plant, which achieved the design throughput rate of 5Mtpa on an annualized basis for December inspite of lower oxide tonnes being fed to the mill than designed for, and high metallurgical recovery, which continues to be above design at 94% at these elevated mill throughput rates.
“Discussions with Red Kite are progressing on the refinancing of our existing debt facility and we expect to update the market during Q1 2018 on the outcomes of these discussions, along with the publication of the Project 5 Million Optimized Plan.”
During the quarter, the AGM sourced ore from multiple pits, Nkran, Akwasiso, Dynamite Hill and Nkran Extension as well as on surface stockpiles. Due to the ongoing Cut 2 push back at Nkran, focusing on waste removal in line with the life of mine plan, and the establishment of the Dynamite Hill pit, the strip ratio increased significantly, whilst ore tonnes and the average grade mined were lower compared to the previous quarter.
At Dynamite Hill, the second satellite deposit to be bought into production, ore mining operations commenced in Q4 2017 as per the plan, with the ramp up to full mining rates of approximately 70 000 tonnes per month expected in Q1 2018.
The processing plant achieved record milling rates of 1 087 million tonnes for the quarter including an annualized milling rate of 5 million tonnes per annum (Mtpa) for the month of December.
Although milling rates were elevated, metallurgical recovery continued to exceed design levels at 94%, with higher than design gravity recovery performance.
This exceptional processing plant performance highlights the capability of the circuit to run at higher throughput levels despite lower than planned softer oxide ores being available to mill.