Centerra Gold has accessed the high grade SB Zone at the Kumtor Gold Project and expects this to lead to production for 2015 in the range of between 470,000 and 520,000 ounces. The company expects relatively even quarterly production from Kumtor as compared to prior years when the majority of the ounces were produced in the fourth quarter.
Centerra met its 2014 annual production guidance with consolidated gold production totalling 620,821 ounces. This included 567,693 ounces from Kumtor and 53,128 ounces from the Boroo mine in Mongolia. During the fourth quarter of 2014, consolidated production was 301,236 ounces, including 291,635 ounces from Kumtor and 9601 ounces from Boroo.
Centerra’s president and CEO Ian Atkinson said, “The Boroo operation continued to perform well in the fourth quarter, exceeding our revised production guidance for the year. At Kumtor, the operation met its annual production guidance and during the fourth quarter produced 291,635 ounces of gold as we accessed the high-grade SB Zone.
“For 2015 we are estimating consolidated gold production to be in the range of 480,000 to 535,000 ounces. Centerra’s projected consolidated all-in sustaining cost per ounce sold for 2015 is within a range of $898 to $1003 and consolidated all-in cost per ounce sold (before taxes) is $1003 to $1121.”
Centerra is continuing to study the impact on the Kumtor SB Zone of the buttress constructed early in 2014 in response to the increased movement of the Davidov Glacier, as well as the Kumtor block model, each of which may result in adjustments to Kumtor’s reserve and resource estimates.
Centerra is also evaluating the significance of lower than expected metallurgical recoveries experienced at Kumtor. Centerra expects to complete this work shortly and plans to release its reserve and resource update in early February.
The Kumtor 2015 guidance range of between 470,000 and 520,000 ounces is lower than that outlined in the life of mine plan set out in the Kumtor technical report primarily as a result of negative block model reconciliation, timing of ore release due to deferral of capital for mine haulage equipment and lower than expected metallurgical recovery.
At Boroo gold production is forecast to be 10,000 to 15,000 ounces. The forecast annual production represents ounces from the secondary leaching of the heap leach pad.