Canada-based Centerra Gold on Thursday delivered solid first-quarter results, with higher gold and copper production despite the plant shutdown at its Öksüt mine, in Turkey, in early March.
The company produced 93 784 oz of gold and 20.6-million pounds of copper at an all-in sustaining cost on a by-product basis of $395/oz. The Öksüt mine produced 54 891 oz and Mount Milligan, in Canada, produced 39 093 oz.
CEO Scott Perry said that Centerra continued to expect strong operational performance at Mount Milligan, but said that the Öksüt mine’s gold doré bar production guidance continued to be under review.
“The company continues to evaluate options to remediate the issue at the ADR plant,” he said.
Centerra has engaged international experts to propose modifications to sections of the ADR plant, including the gold room, to process mercury-bearing ore. The company is also evaluating several potential technical solutions to remove the mercury in the gold recovery process, and has engaged external consultants to prepare an execution plan.
In the meantime, Centerra is looking at alternative means of monetising gold in-carbon material, which could provide a temporary solution until gold doré bar production can be restarted at the site, or over the life-of-mine with minimal equipment required at the ADR plant, Perry said.
Financially, the company generated cash provided by operating activities of $28.3-million, including $63.6-million generated at the Öksüt mine and $20.8-million from the Mount Milligan mine.
Mount Milligan’s cash generation was impacted by the timing of cash collection on the gold and copper concentrate sale of $42-million occurring late in the quarter with cash not received until the second quarter of 2022.
Centerra’s revenue increased by 31% year-on-year to $295.2-million and its net earnings rose 47% to $89.4-million.