Canada’s Lundin Gold (TSX:LUG) is going ahead with expansion plans for its Fruta del Norte gold-silver mine in Ecuador, the country’s largest, only a year after producing the first doré bar on site.
The Vancouver-based miner said the $18.6-million expansion will take throughput from 3,500 to 4,200 tonnes per day over the life of mine and would be funded by cash flow from operations.
Lundin plans to start construction in the first quarter of 2021, ramping up production in the third quarter and increasing mill operations in the fourth quarter.
Lundin, worth almost $2.8 billion (US$2.2bn), worked on developing the asset for almost two years, following a 2016 agreement with Ecuador’s government. That deal allowed it to move ahead with the project, located in the southeastern Amazon province of Zamora Chinchipe.
The company acquired Fruta del Norte in 2014 for $240 million from fellow Canadian miner Kinross Gold (TSX:K) (NYSE:KGC), which had to halt operations after being unable to reach an agreement with authorities regarding the terms for developing the asset.
The underground gold and silver mine, discovered in 2006, contains six of Lundin’s 29 mining concessions and covers 70,000 hectares of land.
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