African Gold Recovery Operations Update
Goldplat plc, the AIM listed gold producer in Africa, announces an operations update on its two market leading gold recovery operations in South Africa and Ghana, which recover gold from waste products of the primary gold mining industry, and an update on Golplat's gold recovery expansion plans in Africa.
Goldplat Recovery (Pty) Limited - South Africa ('GPL')
Goldplat's South African gold recovery operation, GPL continues to produce robust cashflows with particular emphasis on fine carbon processing which has expanded significantly over the past six months with new supply contracts recently signed with major South African gold producers.
The Company has also continued to invest in new capital projects to increase the gold recovery processing capacity at GPL, reduce its stockpile inventory and in turn further increase the South African recovery operations profitability. With this in mind, GPL commissioned the new tailings re-treatment carbon-in-leach ('CIL') plant on time and within budget in March 2013. This CIL will reprocess selected tailings which are currently on site at GPL and that are estimated to comprise five years' worth of production. In addition, a second rotary kiln, which will double the available production capacity at GPL, and will process the significant stockpile of high-grade woodchips (estimated to equate to seven years of current capacity) is on budget with commissioning planned for end of July 2013. The new kiln has already been hoisted onto its foundations to allow for the installation of the internal shell lining, ducting and other dust cleaning equipment.To see photos of the new tailings re-treatment plant and secondary rotary kiln, please see the link at the end of this press release.
Furthermore, as part of the continued succession planning, the Board has appointed Hansie van Vreden, a qualified Metallurgist, as General Manager of GPL. Prior to joining GPL, Hansie was the Production Metallurgist at AngloGold Ashanti's Kopanang Gold Plant in South Africa. The Board is delighted to welcome him to the Goldplat team and believe with his technical expertise and experience he will be ideally suited to drive both the efficiency and profitability of GPL going forward.
Gold Recovery Ghana Limited - Ghana ('GRG')
The Company's second gold recovery operation in Ghana, GRG, which enjoys a tax free status until 2016, continues to be profitable not withstanding the margin pressures that it has sustained over the past reporting period. To mitigate these margin pressures Goldplat has instituted tighter controls in the procurement department and recently agreed more favourable terms on its toll treatment agreement with Endeavour Mining Corporation's Nzema Mine in Ghana, GRG's biggest profit centre, to take into consideration the changing environment in the gold industry. In addition there has been a refractory failure in one of the fluidised bed incinerators, which has reduced the throughput of that section. Whilst the incinerator remains operational the Company is looking at how to return throughput to previous levels and will update shareholders accordingly.
In order to increase the processing capacity of GRG and widen the range of the products that can be treated at the plant, the Company is planning to add an additional spirals circuit to the Fine Carbon Section which will improve the quality of the feed to the incinerator; a thickener has been delivered to site and will be erected in May 2013 to improve the gold recovery at the CIL plant; and a rotary kiln has been purchased for installation at GRG. The kiln is currently in South Africa with installation expected to be complete in the second half of FY14.
Burkina Faso: Midas Gold SARL ('Midas')
In line with the Company's gold recovery expansion plans in Africa, Goldplat is developing a third gold recovery operation in Burkina Faso, Midas. The development of the new gold recovery operation has been delayed for a number of reasons including changes in local environmental and gold export legislation and the shift in Midas' previously planned focus from an artisanal tailings operation similar to that at GRG, to one focussing on the recovery from products such as high grade fine carbon and mill liners from the major gold producers. Midas has re-commissioned the Environmental Study for the site in Dano which is expected to be completed at the end of August 2013 with all operating licences to be in place by the end of the year. The Midas operation will initially be designed to treat high grade material and additional circuits to be added over time when additional recovery material is sourced and secured.
Goldplat CEO Russell Lamming commented "Our market leading gold recovery operations in South Africa and Ghana continue to perform solidly and profitably, taking advantage of the favourable gold production environment in these regions and notwithstanding the recent fall in the gold price. With this in mind, we remain committed to the continued investment in both of these operations where we see the potential for continued strong revenue growth and stable margins. In addition, in order to fully utilise our vast knowledge base and take advantage of our leading position in the gold recovery sector, in Africa we look forward to starting the developing our third recovery operation by the end of 2013 adding a further cash generative operation to Goldplat's portfolio of assets in Africa."
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For further information visit www.goldplat.com or contact:
|Russell Lamming, CEO||Goldplat plc||Tel: +44 (0) 781 0870 587|
|Ewan Leggat/Katy Birkin||SP Angel Corporate Finance LLP||Tel: +44 (0) 20 3463 2260|
|Felicity Edwards/ Charlotte Heap||St Brides Media & Finance Ltd||Tel: +44 (0)20 7236 1177|
Goldplat plc, is an AIM-listed profitable, debt free gold producer and mine development company focused in Africa, which has a strong cash position of GBP1.95 million as at 31 Dec 2012. The Company has a solid portfolio of assets including two gold recovery operations in South Africa and Ghana, which recover precious metal from by-products of the mining process such as woodchips, fine carbon and waste grease. For the FY 2012 these operations produced circa 31,354 ounces of gold. Goldplat also has a producing gold mine in Kenya and two brownfield gold development projects in Ghana and Burkina Faso.
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