QUEBEC - CENTURY MINING of Blaine, Washington, ceased gold mining from the Sigma open pit near Val d'Or on Nov. 5. Production will be ramped up from the Lamaque underground mine, which the company reopened in April 2007.
The Lamaque mine is currently producing 350-400 t/d of ore at an average grade of approximately 5.5 g/t Au. The company has applied for permits to increase production to over 1,800 t/d. Century expects Lamaque to yield positive cash flows by the end of the first quarter of 2008. The company also expects that Lamaque will produce upwards of 100,000 oz of gold per year at a cash cost of approximately $350/oz by the end of the first quarter of 2009. As a result of the shutdown of the open pit, the company's revised production guidance for the full year 2007 is 65,000 oz.
Without the open pit workforce, Century will temporarily reduce its staffing levels at Val d'Or by 191 employees, leaving employment of 110 at the site. This temporary workforce reduction, including both salaried and hourly employees, is necessary until these employees can be transitioned over to the Lamaque underground mine. As the Lamaque mine operations are expanded over the next several months, the employment levels will be increased to approximately 350-400 employees when the mine achieves full production.
Century has also undertaken a major data compilation and mapping effort. Use of recently digitized historic information and the application of geological models have resulted in the discovery of several new ore zones at the Lamaque property. An updated NI43-101 report is due by the end of the year.
Details of the Sigma-Lamaque project are available at www.CenturyMining.com.