Central Asia Metals has surpassed its production target for the first eight months of operation at the Kounrad copper project in southern Kazakhstan. Production for the 2012 calendar year since completion of the construction of the Kounrad plant was 6586 tonnes of copper – 14% above the company’s revised target of 5750 tonnes.
Of this 6383 tonnes of copper were sold during the period with almost the entire tonnage sold through the company’s offtake arrangements with Traxys Europe and the remaining 320 tonnes sold locally in Kazakhstan.
Central Asia Metals says copper production was maintained at the site despite the onset of winter and average temperatures of between -19 degrees and -32 degrees Celsius. Production is continuing at a steady rate, with production at the SX-EW plant of 2117 tonnes for the quarter ending December 31, 2012.
The company’s chief executive officer Nick Clarke says, “2012 has proved to be a very successful first period of production for us at Kounrad and I am particularly pleased that we have been able to continue the production of copper cathodes in the challenging weather conditions experienced from November 2012.
“The production of 6586 tonnes of copper in 2012 is a tremendous achievement and reflects the hard work, dedication and professionalism of our staff on site. Our Kounrad production objectives for 2013 are focussed on an output of 10,000 tonnes of cathode copper and to maintain tight control on costs.
During the next two months, Central Asia Metals will publish a JORC-compliant resource statement for Kounrad as well as continuing with the preparation and feasibility work to facilitate a decision on a potential second SX-EW plant at Kounrad in 2013.
Central Asia Metals built the $47 million processing plant in 2011 and is one of relatively few junior miners in Kazakhstan to successfully take a project through to production.