Aureus Mining reported in mid-May that commissioning of its New Liberty gold project in Liberia was nearing completion, with the first gold pour expected before the end of the month. New Liberty is an open-pit project designed to produce a total of 859,000 oz of gold over an eight-year mine life, including 119,000 oz/y during the first six years of production.

The project is a greenfield development with access from Monrovia, Liberia’s capital and main port, over a 100-km all-season road.

A Komatsu PC2000 excavator was delivered to the New Liberty site, commissioned by the supplier, and began work in the project’s Larjor pit in early March. Mining also started in the weathered zone of the Kinjor starter pit. All oxide material mined from both pits was stockpiled on the run-of-mine pad ready for processing.

Mining equipment training simulators were installed on site and commissioned to increase operator efficiency and allow for the safe training of new Liberian equipment operators. Women from the local community were participating in simulator training to work as articulated dump truck operators.

The oxygen plant area and gold room were in an advanced state of preparation as of mid-May, and the power generation system was fully commissioned with all six generators on site and synchronized.

New Liberty’s proven and probable reserves total 8.5 million mt grading 3.4 g/mt for 923,716 oz of contained gold. The reserves are contained within planned open pits that will have depths of between 180 and 220 m below surface. The orebody is still open at depth.