OceanaGold’s restart of the Didipio mine in the Philippines is running ahead of schedule with $25 million of copper-gold concentrate transported to port.
The company secured a 25-year mine lease renewal for Didipio in July 2021 after operations were halted in the two years prior due to tensions between the Philippine Government and Brisbane-based miner over the mine licence.
OceanaGold is expecting to sell between 23,000 and 28,000 ounces of gold with an all-in sustaining cost (AISC) of $300 to $400 per ounce and 3500 to 4500 tonnes of copper from Didipio in 2021.
This is above its guidance of 5000 to 10,000 ounces of gold and 1000 tonnes of copper. Once it ramps up to full operations, OceanaGold will target 10,000 ounces of gold and 1000 tonnes of copper per month.
OceanaGold will spend $5 million to $7 million in the remainder of the year to complete the restart, which will be funded through the sale of gold-copper concentrate across its operations.
“The recommencement of Didipio operations is progressing ahead of plan. The recruitment of the workforce is ahead of schedule as we expect approximately 65 per cent of the total workforce to be in place by the end of the third quarter and approximately 90 per cent by the end of the year,” OceanaGold chief operating officer and acting chief executive officer Scott Sullivan said.
“Training of the workforce is progressing well ahead of the restart of processing and mining activities expected in the fourth quarter. The health and safety of our employees and local communities is paramount and we continue to manage the ongoing risks and personnel impacts associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Oceanagold has sold 1096 ounces of the remaining dorè gold in August, with 90 per cent of the revenue from the $25 million of copper gold concentrate expected to be received by next month.
“As at September 10, approximately 6,000 dry metric tonnes of the total concentrate in inventory has been delivered to port ahead of shipping,” Sullivan said.
“The company expects approximately 80 per cent of the concentrate to be transported to the port by the end of the third quarter and entirely transported by mid-October.”
OceanaGold is expecting a return to processing and underground ore stoping in November.