Global miner Nordgold produced 764 500 oz of gold in the nine months ended September 30, which was largely on par with the 772 200 oz produced in the nine months to September 30, 2020.
The company explains that planned lower production at the Gross, Taparko and Suzdal mines was offset by strong performances at the Bissa-Bouly, Taborny and Irokinda mines.
Nordgold has mining operations in Russia, Kazakhstan, Burkina Faso, Guinea and Canada.
The gold price remained relatively resilient, albeit still volatile and below the highs seen in the middle of this year. The average realised gold price increased by $45/oz year-on-year to $1 791/oz.
The Gross mine expansion project, in Russia, continues to progress on time and within budget, Nordgold says. The company completed the first phase of the project in September, increasing the mining and processing capacity of the mine to 18-million tonnes of ore a year, up from 16-million tonnes a year.
Phase 2 of the expansion project will raise processing capacity to 26-million tonnes of ore a year and should be complete in 2024.
The company maintains its intention to pay a minimum dividend of $400-million in two equal instalments on the back of the group’s interim and full-year financial results.
CEO Nikolai Zelenski says the company’s operations were supported by a strong gold price in the reporting period, while gold production was in line with expectations.
He adds that Nordgold remains committed to a disciplined capital allocation strategy, near zero leverage and industry-leading free cash flow generation.
“This enables us to deliver outstanding shareholder returns, while also investing in the longer-term development of the group, driving production growth and reducing our overall cost profile.
“The combination of a strong asset portfolio, high potential low-cost development projects and a continued focus on operational improvement will enable us to maintain our performance despite inflationary pressures.”
Zelenski concludes that this gives confidence in Nordgold’s future and its ability to continue to develop the business throughout the cycle.