Regional News - Africa December 2017

Acacia Agrees to Pay Tanzania $300M

By Gavin du Venage, South African Editor

Acacia Mining has blinked in its dispute with the Tanzania government, which does not bode well for other miners facing a similar standoff over legislative uncertainty, analysts said.

In March, Tanzania President John Magufuli banned the export of gold and copper ore produced by the country’s largest gold miner, Acacia Gold, majority owned by Canada’s Barrick Gold. The government also levied a $190 billion fine on Acacia — equal to about two centuries of revenue.

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Hope For Mining Industry Under New Govt in Zimbabwe

By Gavin du Venage, South African Editor

A military coup in Zimbabwe could provide a jump start to the country’s mining industry, potentially one of the most vibrant on the continent.
In November, the military overthrew Robert Mugabe, bringing his 37-year reign over the southern Africa country to an abrupt end. The near bloodless coup swept Mugabe’s former deputy Emmerson Mnangagwa to the presidency, just weeks after he had been fired.

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PEA Supports Underground Mine Development at Karowe, Botswana

Lucara Diamond Corp. has reported the results of a preliminary economic assessment (PEA) of development of an underground mine at its Karowe diamond mining operations in Botswana. The PEA assumes that underground operations will be initiated after completion of the current open-pit mine, currently planned for 2026. Kimberlite production from underground mining will be processed at the existing Karowe processing plant over a 10-year period following the depletion of the open-pit operations.

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Regional News - Africa November 2017

Randgold Prepares to Complete Kibali Underground Mine in the DRC

The Kibali gold mine remains on track to achieve its production target of 610,000 ounces (oz) this year as its underground operations, and the integration and automation of the vertical shaft enters the final commissioning and automation stage, according to Randgold Resources CEO Mark Bristow.

The mine is anticipating a significant increase in production once the final shaft commissioning, which remains on a tight schedule, has been completed.

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Golden Star Begins Stoping at Prestea Underground

Golden Star Resources began stoping at its high-grade Prestea Underground gold mine in southwest Ghana in late September. Successful blasting of initial ore from the first stope in the West Reef orebody took place on September 27. The first stope is being mined using mechanized shrinkage, utilizing Alimak raise climbers. The ore is hauled to surface via the mine’s Central shaft.

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Barrick, Tanzania Reach Agreement in Acacia Dispute

After months of back and forth, Barrick Gold Corp. and the government of Tanzania have agreed on a framework for a new partnership between Acacia Mining plc and the government where economic benefits from Acacia would be shared with Tanzania on a 50/50 basis. The framework was signed on October 19 in Dar es Salaam following a meeting between Barrick Executive Chairman John L. Thornton and the President of the United Republic of Tanzania His Excellency Dr. John P. Magufuli.

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B2Gold Pours the First Gold at Fekola Project

B2Gold poured the first gold at its open-pit Fekola gold project in Mali on October 7 after completing construction of the Fekola mill in late September, more than three months ahead of schedule. The company expects the project to achieve commercial production by year-end 2017. Gold production through year-end is forecast at between 50,000 ounces (oz) and 55,000 oz.

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Regional News - Africa October 2017

Endeavour Starts Building Ity CIL Project in Cote d’Ivoire

Endeavour Mining has started construction of its Ity carbon-in-leach (CIL) project in Cote d’Ivoire, where its Ity heap-leach operations have been in production for more than 20 years. Based on current reserves, the CIL project is expected to add 14 years to Ity mine life. Average annual production over the first five years is forecast at 235,000 ounces per year (oz/y) at all-in sustaining costs of $494/oz. Initial capital expenditures are estimated at $413 million.

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Hummingbird Nearing Startup at Yanfolila

Hummingbird Resources expects to complete commissioning of its Yanfolila gold project in western Mali during the fourth quarter of 2017 and to pour its first gold before year-end. Preproduction mining by contractor African Mining Services (AMS) began on schedule in August, and ore was being stockpiled in advance of its introduction into the process plant. AMS currently has one Liebherr 9150 excavator, one Liebherr 9250 excavator, six Cat 777 trucks, five Cat D9 dozers, one Cat 336 excavator, and two Cat 980 front-end loaders on site.

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Feasibility Study Supports Teranga’s Bandore Project

Teranga Gold has reported positive results from a feasibility study of its open-pit Banfora gold project in southwest Burkina Faso. Base case highlights from the study include average mill feed grade of 1.88 grams per metric ton (mt) of gold and average production of 119,000 ounces per year (oz/y) over a mine life of nine years. Preproduction capital expenditures are estimated at $232 million.

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Reinventing the Gemstone Market

The takeover of London-listed precious stone producer Gemfields by majority shareholder Pallinghurst in late June is the coming together of a plan to create a de Beers-type marketing platform for gemstones. Gemfields produces emeralds and amethysts in Zambia and rubies in Mozambique. Brian Gilbertson, chairman and founder of South African-based Pallinghurst, said he wants to create the same value chain for gems that De Beers created for diamonds.

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Regional News - Africa September 2017

DFS Supports Development of Ivanhoe’s Platreef Project

Ivanhoe Mines has released positive results from an independent definitive feasibility study (DFS) for the planned first phase of its Platreef underground platinum group metals (PGMs), gold, nickel, and copper mine and concentrator in South Africa. First-phase development is based on plant throughput of 4 million metric tons per year (mt/y), producing 476,000 ounces per year (oz/y) of platinum, palladium, rhodium and gold (3 PGMs + gold), plus 21 million pounds per year (lb/y) of nickel and 13 million lb/y of copper, in concentrates.

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Endeavour Mining Acquires Mali Gold Project, Sells Ghana Gold Mine

In separate transactions, Endeavour Mining has announced agreements to acquire Avnel Gold Mining and its 80% interest in the Kalana gold project in southern Mali, and to sell its 90% stake in the Nzema gold mine in southwest Ghana to BCM International Ltd. Consideration for the Avenel purchase is Endeavour shares valued at approximately $122 million. Consideration to be received by Endeavour for the Nzema sale is cash totaling up to $65 million.

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