The two gold development projects that US-based miner Newmont Goldcorp has earmarked up to $150-million for this year, are nearing completion and will reach commercial production before the end of 2019.
The Ahafo mill expansion, in Ghana, and the Quecher Main project, in Peru, will both achieve commercial production in the fourth quarter, Newmont Goldcorp affirmed in its first-quarter results announcement on Thursday.
The Ahafo mill expansion, which will require between $35-million and $45-million in 2019, will increase the average gold production of Ahafo by between 75 000 oz/y and 100 000 oz/y in the first five years, starting in 2020.
Together with the recently completed Subika underground project, the Ahafo mill expansion will improve production to between 550 000 oz/y and 650 000 oz/y for the first five years of production – 2020 to 2024.
The Quecher Main project, at the Yanacocha gold mine, will extend the life of the long-running mine to 2027. It will add oxide production at Yanacocha and is designed to produce 200 000 oz/y.
In total, Newmont Goldcorp will spend $390-million on development capital in 2019 and other projects include investments in the Tanami power project, in Australia and the TRJV third shaft in North America, as well as expenditures to advance studies for future projects.
The Tanami power station project was completed in March and entailed the installation of two power stations, a 66 kV interconnected power line and a 450 km natural gas pipeline. The project’s total capital cost was $245-million.
Development capital will taper off in the next few years, estimated at about $70-million for 2020 and $50-million in the longer-term, until additional projects are approved.
The group’s consolidated capital expenditure for 2019 will be $1.07-billion and $730-million in 2020, of which sustaining capital will be $700-million this year and $660-million in 2020.
The company closed its $10-billion acquisition of Canadian gold miner Goldcorp last week, after the first-quarter ended.