Goldplat plc, the AIM quoted gold producer, is pleased to provide a trading update prior to announcing its results for the year ending 30 June 2008, to outline the strong progress made across its portfolio of projects in South Africa , Ghana and Kenya . Both the Company's gold recovery plants are performing well and ahead of management expectations, with production and revenues steadily increasing. Furthermore, its gold operation in Kenya is on track, with an aim to commence production in Q4 2008 and new acquisition opportunities throughout Africa are under review.
Goldplat CEO Demetri Manolis said, "We continue to show strong growth, with both recovery businesses performing ahead of expectations and our Kenyan Lolgorien gold exploration and production project advancing as planned. We look forward to a busy period ahead and a positive reaction to the announcement of our year end results in September 2008."
Having invested in new machinery and upgraded existing equipment to enable more materials to be processed efficiently, operations at the South African gold recovery business are going from strength to strength. Costs are being reduced and margins increased. Stocks of materials for processing have increased to record levels of circa 45,976 oz of precious metals and discussions are underway with a number of leading gold producers for further new business opportunities.
The Company is reviewing various mining opportunities within South Africa in tandem with its new Black Economic Empowerment partner, Vunani Limited, as well as discussing a BEE partner for Goldplat Recovery (Pty) Limited itself.
The Ghanaian recovery plant has performed well since it commenced production at the beginning of the year, with the plant now running at full capacity. New supplies of raw materials have been secured for future processing, enabling full capacity to be maintained. The smelter is now operational and the first samples of gold purchased from the artisanal workers have been smelted. The bullion produced assayed in excess of 85% gold.
The Company now has 89,000 tonnes of artisanal tailings stockpiled estimated to contain up to 35,365 oz, based on representative samples of gold, which exceeds nine years of current production capability.
Goldplat's 50% owned Lolgorien gold operation continues to gain momentum. With artisanal tailings frequently being delivered to the site, over 1,100 tonnes of stockpile is now registered. Phase II of the staged development programme is underway, and as a result the total strike length now exposed has been extended to 93 metres. Chip sampling assay results indicate that the entire strike has an average gold value of 6.9 g/t Au over a stope width of 1.27 metres containing a 42 metres stretch of 10.13 g/t over 1.4 metres.
In addition, the adit has been fully equipped with rails which allow the use of 'coco pans' to transport the broken ore to the tipping point. Production efficiencies have increased markedly as a result.
An exploration agenda has been set with the initiation of diamond drilling comprising 14 holes for a total drill length of 500 metres. These holes are designed to intersect the quartz vein some 30-40 metres down-dip from the current on-reef development. The information from the drilling programme, together with that from the adjacent development, will be modelled in 3D using Datamine software, and used to produce a resource statement. The close proximity of the sampling points should allow for a high confidence resource. To date over 350 tonnes of ore has been stockpiled at the plant site in readiness for the bulk sampling phase. Phase II is budgeted to cost US$200k and remains within budget.
An additional US$500k investment and refurbishment programme is also underway aimed at bringing the plant into production in Q4 2008. Equipment has been purchased from South Africa and is scheduled to arrive at the plant at the end of the month.
Developments to local infrastructure are being implemented by the Rural Electrification Authority ("REA"). The REA has embarked on an electrification programme for the local town, Lolgorien, which is expected to be completed by the end of September 2008. This development is likely to be of considerable benefit to the operation as it precludes the use of expensive and inefficient diesel generators.
This announcement has been reviewed by Mr Mark Austin. Mr Austin is the group geologist for Goldplat and has more than 25 years' relevant experience in the field of activity concerned. He is a fellow of the Geological Society of South Africa (GSSA) and has consented to the inclusion of the material in the form and context in which it appears.
For further information visit www.goldplat.com or contact:
Demetri Manolis, CEO Goldplat plc, Tel: +27 11 423 1203, Mob: +27 82 454 7392
James Joyce WH Ireland Limited, Tel: +44 (0)20 7220 1666
Isabel Crossley St Brides Media & Finance Ltd, Tel: +44 (0)20 7242 4477
Goldplat plc is an AIM-listed gold producer with operations in Africa . Its strategy is to create a mid-tier mining house focused on gold production leveraged through revenue generated from its gold recovery businesses.
The Company has two recovery business based in South African and Ghana, which, by safely disposing of mining by-products, fulfil an important aspect of the mines' environmental management programmes. The South African plant is located near the centre of the East Rand Goldfield and raw material feedstocks are sourced from many of the major South African mining companies including Anglogold Ashanti, Goldfields, Harmony, DRD Gold and other smaller producers,. The Ghana plant, located in the free port of Tema, provides access to raw materials from mines in Mali , Guinea , Burkina Faso , Benin , Cote D'Ivorie, Senegal , the DRC and Mauritania , as well as Ghana .
Goldplat is expanding into gold mining through the acquisition of known deposits with targets of between 200,000 and one million ounces of ore contained. To this end, in a 50/50 JV, it is developing the potential of the highly prospective 213 sq km Lolgorien licence area located in the historically producing Migori Archaean Greenstone Belt in western Kenya , with a view of establishing a mining operation in the short term. A number of other potential projects across Africa are under review.
Glossary of Terms
STRIKE: the horizontal direction of a planar body (90º to the dip direction)
TAILINGS: the residues from the processing of ore
ADIT: a near-horizontal tunnel driven into a hillside
DRIVE: a tunnel on strike that is developed on ore
Goldplat is a profitable, African gold recovery services company . . .More info...
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