Australian gold producer St Barbara has sold its Southern Cross operations to a subsidiary of China Hanking Holdings. The Southern Cross operation ceased mining and processing in the December quarter, and has since been under care and maintenance.
The sale to Hanking Gold Mining is expected to raise $22.5 million for St Barbara, and includes all mine and related assets at the Southern Cross site.
“Subject to obtaining Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) approval and other necessary consents, completion of the sale is expected to occur by early March,” says St Barbara’s managing director Tim Lehany.
The Southern Cross operations are centred on Marvel Loch, which is 30km south of the town of Southern Cross and 360km east of Perth in Western Australia. Current operations are based at the Marvel Loch underground mine, with 97,392 ounces of gold produced for the 2011/2012 financial year.
Gold mineralization at the site extends over a 1.3km strike length and has been identified to depths of over 700 metres below surface. The plant has been in operation for more than 15 years and has annual production capacity of 2.2 million tonnes based on a conventional carbon-in-leach circuit.
St Barbara’s other gold assets include its Leonora operations in Western Australia, its Simberi mine in Papua New Guinea and Gold Ridge mine in the Solomon Islands, which have a combined mineral resource of more than 16 million ounces of gold. The gold operations are expected to produce more than 435,000 ounces of gold in 2013.