Johannesburg, South Africa — 18 May 2012 – Gold Fields Limited “’ the world’s fourth-largest gold producer “’ says its gold and copper prospect in the Philippines, Far Southeast, may be similar in scale to Harmony Gold’s much- acclaimed Wafi-Golpu resource in Papua New Guinea.
Miningmx reports that in March Gold Fields increased its shareholding in Far Southeast to 40% for which it paid US$230 million in total. It has the option to acquire an additional 20% stake for US$110 million, and the project’s holding company is in the process of measuring the resource.
Gold Fields head of growth and international projects Tommy McKeith said the system had an exploration target of 900Mt, with a gold equivalent metal content of over 50Moz. As in the case of Wafi-Golpu, the resource contained copper as co-product.
“That’s our target,” McKeith said. “This porphyry is 1km in diameter, so it’s a big porphyry system and very high grade as far as these systems go. That exploration target will be more than adequate for us to commit to a capital programme for a big mining operation,” he added.
Drawing a comparison to Harmony Gold’s Wafi-Golpu project in Papua New Guinea, McKeith said Far Southeast was very similar in scale to the resource Harmony had announced. “But ours is still a target, it is not a resource,” he pointed out.
Harmony Gold has labelled its Wafi-Golpu joint venture as a game changer with a measured resource base of more than one billion tonnes. The project is currently in the pre-feasibility phase, with a capex estimate ranging between US$3 and $5 billion.
Gold Fields, meanwhile, would be following the regulatory process necessary for foreign mining companies to become majority shareholders in Filipino mining projects, prior to acquiring the additional 20% stake.
McKeith said Far Southeast would form part of Gold Fields’ target of achieving 5Mozpa, either production or in development, by the end of 2015. For 2012, the company has a production guidance of 3.5Moz.
Source: Miningmx. For more information, click here.