Cluff Gold plc has confirmed that two of its three principal projects in the region will be producing gold by early 2008.
Traded on the AIM, the company has assembled a portfolio of mineral exploration and development interests in Côte d’Ivoire, Burkina Faso, Sierra Leone, and Mali. Its aim is to provide a steady progression of mines coming into production, and to have the capacity to produce 300 000 ounces of gold within two years.
In releasing the company’s interim results for the six months to June 30, 2007, Chairman and chief executive Algy Cluff confirms that the project team at the Angovia gold heap leach project in Cote d’Ivoire is working hard to fulfil its objective of delivering production by the end of this year. “When it reaches full production during the course of 2008, Angovia is expected to produce approximately 40 000 ounces of gold per annum,” he adds.
Simultaneously, the Cluff project team has been driving the development of the Kalsaka gold heap leach project in Burkina Faso. “I am pleased to report that this project should commence production early next year, building up to a full annual production rate of approximately 60 000 ounces,” Cluff reveals. “Accordingly, on an annualised basis, we will be a 100 000-ounce gold producer in 2008,” he says.
“In common with many exploration and development companies, our company raises funds in discrete tranches in order to finance its activities,” Cluff explains. “We are very pleased to have raised US$30 million (R210 million) by an equity placement in March, which has allowed us to finance construction of the projects,” he states.
Meanwhile drilling has continued at the company’s Baomahun gold exploration project – a joint venture with Winston Mines in Sierra Leone, and an independent consultant has delineated an increased JORC compliant resource figure of 1.16 million ounces an increase of more than 30% on last year’s figure of 880 000 ounces.
Drilling, suspended earlier in the year because of seasonal rains, has resumed. “Because the resource base has increased significantly with only 25% of the mineralised trend having been drill-tested, we judged it appropriate to commission a scoping study to determine the parameters that would govern the economic viability of the project,” Cluff reveals.
“This study was recently completed by RSG Global Consulting and SENET Engineering of South Africa,” he says, “and confirmed our expectation that Baomahun can be regarded as a project with the capacity to produce 140 000 to 200 000 ounces of gold per annum. Accordingly we will continue our drilling programme to define the resource which will support such a level of output,” Cluff adds.
The Company has completed its US$5 million (R35 million) earn-in obligation to achieve a 60% ownership interest of the project.