A DEFINITIVE feasibility study (DFS) has confirmed that Emerald Resources’ Okvau Gold Project in Cambodia is robust and compelling. The DFS is based on a 2 million tonnes per annum operation and an ore reserve of 907,000 ounces.

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The camp at Emerald Resources’ Okvau Gold Project in eastern Cambodia’s Mondulkiri province.

The company’s Board has approved the project to proceed to construction subject to financing arrangement and permitting, including a Mineral Investment Agreement with the Royal Government of Cambodia to support an Industrial Mining Licence.

The DFS confirms Okvau’s robust nature with an initial operating Life-of-Mine (LOM) of more than seven years, annually producing approximately 106,000 ounces from a single open pit. Ore will be processed through a 2 million tonnes/annum plant utilising a single stage crushing circuit and SAG mill, sulphide flotation, regrind mill followed by conventional cyanide leaching.

The initial ore reserve is 14.3 million tonnes @ 2.0 g/t with average AISC of US$731/ounce. The updated resource estimate is 17.7 million tonnes for 1.14 million ounces with 1.01 million ounces as indicated and 130,000 as inferred. The LOM strip ratio is 5.8:1, and processing recovery is 84% for 762,000 recovered ounces.

Emerald managing director Morgan Hart said: “The Emerald team has delivered a maiden reserve of just under 1 million ounces along with a DFS demonstrating the exceptional economics of Okvau, all of which has been achieved within 12 months of Emerald becoming formally involved in the project.

“The results of the DFS, including a pre-tax NPV (5%) of approximately A$300 million with IRR of 48% pa, vindicates Emerald’s decision to acquire 100% ownership. Importantly, given the reserve grade and moderate strip ratio, the project has low AISC of US$731 per ounce over the LOM.

“This will be the first large-scale gold project to be developed in Cambodia and Emerald is confident this first mover status will result in a number of growth opportunities.”

Given completion of the DFS and with targeted development due to commence late in the fourth quarter, Emerald is focused on:

  • Procuring project approvals and permitting;
  • Securing project funding;
  • Identifying additional cost-saving measures from the forecast capital and operating expenditure;
  • Optimising open pit staging and scheduling; and
  • Pursuing an active exploration program aimed at discovering nearby additional gold deposits that can deliver additional mill feed to the project.

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