TORONTO – Canadian bullion producer Iamgold Corp
. reported a 23% increase in its proven and probable gold reserves, which reached 17.9 million oz. at the end of 2018 due to the conversion of resources to reserves at the Saramacca deposit in Suriname, the Côté gold project in Ontario, and the Boto gold project in eastern Senegal.
At the end of 2017, the miner’s reserves were 4.5 million oz. of gold, which means that 3.4 million oz. were added in the course of 12 months. A reserve increase following a pre-feasibility study at the Essakane gold mine in Burkina Faso also contributed to the growth.
The Toronto-based firm also reported that total attributable measured and indicated gold resources – inclusive of reserves – increased by 13% or 3.1 million oz. to 27.9 million oz. of gold at the end of 2018. Total attributable inferred gold resources, on the other hand, remained at a similar level to the prior year at 8.7 million oz. at the end of 2018.
“Over the last two years, we have increased our attributable reserves by 129%, net of mine depletion. Once again, each of our owner operated mines experienced a year over year increase in reserves, net of depletion, underscoring the strength of our core assets,” Steve Letwin, president and CEO of Iamgold, said in a media statement.
Letwin explained that the rise was supported by 1.0 million attributable ounces in the Saramacca deposit’s reserves located at the Rosebel mine. Essakane, on the other hand, added 900,000 attributable ounces after depletion in reserves following the pre-feasibility study completed in 2017, while the feasibility study completed at Côté gold allowed the miner to convert 3.2 million oz. to the proven category while also adding 900,000 oz. to the reserve base, on an attributable basis.
Iamgold’s CEO also outlined his company’s plans for 2019: “At Rosebel, our goal is to add resources along the Saramacca-Brokolonko trend and test priority targets on the Rosebel concession. At Essakane, our 24-km drill program is intended to support the ongoing heap leach and CIL optimization feasibility study, while we also continue to explore high priority regional targets to identify additional satellite resources. At Westwood, we continue to work on resource conversion and expansion, with another 65 km of drilling planned for 2019. At our development projects at Côté and Boto, we will continue to advance exploration programs targeting resource expansions as well as new discoveries on adjacent concessions.”
This story first appeared on www.Mining.com.