Mining Project News
Samira Hill Expanded to 150,000 Ounces Gold Per Year
A revised feasibility study for the Samira Hill gold project in Niger recommends that the mill capacity be doubled to 6,000 tonnes per day. First year production is targeted at 150,000 ounces of gold, with production to commence in the second quarter of 2001.
The additional mill feed would come from the nearby Libiri deposit. The combined Samira-Libiri operation shows an internal rate of return of 62%, and generates net cash flow of US$42 million after capital payback. Direct capital costs are estimated at US$26 million, and life-of-mine cash costs, including 5.5% royalties to the Government of Niger, average US$194 per recovered ounce.
The SAG mill for Samira has been purchased from a South African facility and will handle 6,000 tonnes of saprolitic ore and 4,000 tonnes of harder transition ore, each day. Water will be supplied by a combination of seasonal pumping and natural runoff to a 7-million-m3 reservoir, which is under construction.
Etruscan Resources Inc. of Dartmouth, N.S., and SEMAFO Inc. of Montreal hold their 50% interests in the project through African GeoMin Mining Development Corp. Ltd., which in turn owns 80% of Socit des Mines du Liptako, the operating company. The other 20% is held by the Government of Niger.
European Bank to Finance Gold Development in Greenland
Vancouver-based Crew Development Corp. has confirmed the signing of a Mandate Letter appointing Bayerische Hypo-und Vereinsbank AG as advisor and arranger for the debt financing of the high-grade Nalunaq gold project. This will involve construction of the underground mine and processing facilities.
Crew is earning a 67% interest in the joint venture, which is 6 km from an ice-free fjord, and 40 km from the port of Nanortalik. The 33% contributing partner is NunaMinerals, a state-owned Greenlandic company. The deposit has a geological resource of 1.8 million ounces, and is the first find of visible in-situ gold in Greenland. A March 1999 prefeasibility study by MRDI (H.A. Simons) estimated an internal rate of return of 51% for a 500-tonne-per-day operation, with a cash cost of US$160 per ounce. The calculated 27.3 grams gold per tonne mill feed (after mining losses and dilution) indicated a payback of 1.8 years on the US$20-million capital investment.
Test mining is proceeding at 200-300 tonnes/day, with grade verification being supervised by Strathcona Mineral Services. The joint venture intends to complete the final feasibility study and secure project financing to allow for production by the first quarter of 2002.
Mindoro Nickel Project Feasibility Study in the Philippines
Crew Development Corp. (CDC) has also awarded Kvaerner Philippine Corp., Inc. (KPCI) a bankable feasibility study for the 100%-controlled Mindoro nickel project in the Philippines. This 18-month project is to carry out a feasibility study for a 40,000-tonne/year nickel laterite processing facility, including mine processing, slurry pipeline transportation and second generation high-pressure acid leaching (HPAL) with refinery and tailings disposal facilities.
The study will also independently assess the project’s ore resources, test upgrading potential of these resources, develop mine plans and production schedules and estimate capital and operating costs. A pilot plant will also be established in the later part of the project.
KPCI will carry out the feasibility study in association with Kvaerner specialized sub-contractors and E&C Australia (KECA) who will take a significant role in conducting and managing the study.