NUNAVUT – Agnico Eagle Mines of Toronto has updated the 43-101 report for its Meliadine gold project, located 25 km via all-weather road from Rankin Inlet. The company expects initial capital costs to be US$911 million, followed by US$357 million in sustaining costs. The after-tax internal rate of return would be 10.3%, and the after-tax net present value (5% discount) would be US$267 million.
Agnico is basing it plans on only the proven and probable reserves found in the Tiriganiaq and Wesmeg deposits. They total 13.9 million tonnes grading 7.44 g//t Au and contain 3.3 million oz of gold. That amount of ore will support a mine life of nine years.
The company’s plans are exclusive of measured and indicated resources (20.2 million tonnes at 5.06 g/t and 3.3 million contained oz) and the inferred resource (14.1 million tonnes at 7.65 g/t and 3.5 million contained oz).
The technical report suggests a phased approached to Meliadine development. The mill would average 3,000 t/d throughput in years one to three, and 5,000 t/d in years four to nine. The ore will be mined underground except for two pits in the Tiriganiaq deposit during years four to seven.
The Meliadine mine will produce 326,000 oz of gold annually in years one to three, but with the mill expansion, annual output will rise to 362,000 oz over the remaining mine life. Life-of-mine total cash costs per ounce on a by-product basis are expected to average US$531.
The report may be read in its entirety on SEDAR or the company’s website, AgnicoEagle.com.
Agnico has set a capital budget at Meliadine for 2015 of about US$64 million, including US$21 million for 2,500 metres of underground development. Permitting activities continue.