PERTH (miningweekly.com) – ASX-listed gold miner Gascoyne Resources has reported a solid quarter of production in the three months to December from its Dalgaranga operation, in Western Australia.
Gold production in the December quarter reached 16 442 oz, on par with the 16 744 oz delivered in the previous quarter, bringing first-half production for the 2022 financial year to 33 185 oz.
Gold sales for the quarter under review reached 42 064 oz, down slightly from the 42 377 oz sold in the previous quarter, with realised gold prices in the quarter increasing from A$2 529/oz to A$2 537/oz.
“The December quarter saw a significant number of changes across our business as we worked hard to optimise, enhance and unlock value from our flagship asset, the Dalgaranga gold mine in Western Australia including our state-of-the-art, low operating cost 2.5-million-tonne-a-year gold treatment facility,” said MD and CEO Simon Lawson.
“We were pleased to see a significant improvement in our safety performance during the quarter, with a 50% improvement in the total recordable injury frequency rate (TRIFR). That said, production and mining costs were clearly at unacceptable levels and we have been working hard to address this through the implementation of the enhanced business plan during the quarter.
“The key elements of this plan were to defer the capital intensive Stage 3 cut-backs in the Gilbey’s pit and focus on higher-grade ore sources to achieve a consistent +1 g/t gold head grade into the Dalgaranga mill. This strategy is designed to lower our overall risk profile, improve head grades and recoveries, drive up monthly ounce production and reduce costs.
“The benefits of this strategy began to flow through towards the end of the quarter with production of more than 6 000 oz for the month of December and on track for well over 7 000 oz in January that includes a record weekly gold pour of 2 300 oz. If we can maintain this trajectory, that will put us on track to achieve the low end of our current guidance band of 70 000 oz to 75 000 oz for 2022, with a significantly improved ounce and cost profile in the second half of the financial year,” said Lawson.
“In addition to aggressive optimisation and cost reduction strategies during the quarter, the team has embarked on a rejuvenated near-mine exploration strategy aimed at extending existing deposits and finding new, higher-grade ore sources in close proximity to the plant. This strategy has paid immediate dividends with high-grade drilling results achieved from areas such as Plymouth and Hendricks.
“Drilling is continuing and we are looking forward to reporting more results from these initiatives in the weeks ahead. In parallel with the enhanced business plan and near-mine exploration programme, we are progressing permitting activities for the Melville deposit at Yalgoo, for which we announced an updated mineral resource estimate during the quarter based on previous drilling conducted by Firefly.”