AuRico Gold achieved commercial production at its Young-Davidson underground mine in northern Ontario effective October 31, following successful commissioning of the shaft and hoisting infrastructure. The commissioning marked a key project milestone, according to the company—unlocking the potential of the Young-Davidson underground mine and supporting increased underground production and favorable unit cost efficiencies over the life of the mine.
AuRico acquired the Young-Davidson project in October 2011 when it acquired Northgate Minerals. The project poured its first gold on April 30, 2012, based on production from its open-pit mine. Some underground production has been brought to surface since that time via a ramp. Design capacity of the mill is 6,000 mt/d. In 2013, the project is expected to produce 120,000 to 140,000 oz of gold at cash costs of $575 to $675/oz and all-in sustaining costs of $1,250 to $1,350/oz.
At year-end 2012, Young-Davidson had 596,000 oz of gold at grades of 2.19 g/mt in proven reserves and 3.2 million oz at grades of 2.70 g/mt in probable reserves.
The Young-Davidson mine is located near the town of Matachewan, Ontario, approximately 60 km west of Kirkland Lake in the southwestern part of the Abitibi greenstone belt. The property consists of contiguous mineral leases and claims totaling 11,000 acres and is situated on the site of two past producing mines that produced 1 million oz of gold from the 1930s to the 1950s.