Johannesburg, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 20 February, 2008 – Great Basin Gold Limited (GBG) – an emerging mid-tier gold producer listed on the Toronto and American stock exchanges – has announced a 41% increase in measured and indicated resources to approximately 11 million ounces at its Burnstone gold project in the Witwatersrand Basin in South Africa.
Releasing its latest resource update here late yesterday, GBG revealed that its ongoing exploration programme – designed to upgrade and expand the mineral resources in Area 1 and Area 2 of the project – continued to return good results.
Information from 15 additional drill holes has been incorporated into the resource model of 245 holes, and the new mineral resources show that – although the pre-diluted average grade has decreased by 16% to 6.9 g/t – total contained gold in the measured and indicated resources has increased by 41% to approximately 11 million ounces. “A total of 3.2 million ounces of gold has been added to the measured and indicated resources (an increase of 41%),” the update adds, “and approximately 2.0 million ounces has been added to the inferred resources, which represents a dramatic increase of 486%.”
GBG completed an optimised feasibility study on Area 1 of the Burnstone project in July 2007 and is currently advancing the first of a two stage development programme designed to take the project to production. The current programme – involving construction of a decline and taking a bulk sample – is underway, and trial mining is expected to commence in the second half of 2008.
President and CEO Ferdi Dippenaar also revealed that results from drilling in Area 4, which is adjacent to Area 1, could result in more ounces being available for mining through the decline and underground infrastructure currently being developed.
Capital expenditure on the Burnstone project has been estimated at US$153 million (more than R1.1 billion). Production of between 35 and 36 000ounces is expected for 2009.This should ramp up to maximum production by late 2011, at which stage Burnstone will be treating 125 000 tonnes of ore per month, and its average annual production will be 214 000 ounces over 14 years.
At a cut-off of 400cm g/t, Burnstone Area 1 has a resource 7.7 million tonnes and a reserve of 2.4 million tonnes.