RUSSIA – With a bankable feasibility study at the ready, Vancouver-based BEMA GOLD has increased the bridge loan to US$150 million from US$100 million for the development of the Kupol gold mine in far eastern Russia. The loan has been arranged with Bayerische Hypo- und Vereinsbank AG.
Highlights of the feasibility study include creating a high-grade mine that will begin production in the middle of 2008. Indicated resources are 6.4 million tonnes at 20.3 g/t Au and 257.0 g/t Ag, and inferred resources are 4.0 million tonnes at 12.4 g/t Au and 171.4 g/t Ag. Simultaneous open pit and underground mining is planned. Total cash costs are estimated to be US$83/oz of gold during the first two years of production at a rate of 701,000 oz of gold and 6.25 million oz of silver annually.
Bema has a 40% interest in the Kupol project and will be increasing its share to 75%. The company’s website is at www.Bema.com.