Havilah Resources has signed an MoU with its mining partner Consolidated Mining and Civil (CMC) for mining of the southern extension of the Portia gold deposit in South Australia, near the historic mining centre of Broken Hill. This work will be undertaken under the same 50:50 revenue sharing arrangement as previously arranged.
This will expand the Portia open pit a further 120 metres to the south of its present position and will capture a significant additional volume of both high grade and medium grade gold mineralisation that has been outlined by recent drilling. This development will extend the Portia mine life by a further 12 months.
CMC has largely completed mining according to the original open pit design that commenced in April 2015 and within its original estimated time frame. During this period approximately 320,000 tonnes of ore material has been delivered to surface in accordance with original estimates. Appreciable ore stockpiles are available that will continue to be processed until at least February 2017, based on current throughput rates.
In recent months Havilah has been working closely with the South Australian Department of State Development to secure approvals for the extension so that mining can continue without interruption. This has entailed submission of an extensively revised PEPR (Program for Environmental Protection and Rehabilitation) document that incorporates redesign of the overburden waste dump and tailings storage facility to accommodate the additional overburden and processed ore that will be generated by the mining expansion.
Havilah plans to maintain an active drilling program with two drilling rigs operating at the southern end of the open pit with the aim of further extending the Portia gold resource.
Havilah managing director Dr Chris Giles said, “We are very pleased to announce this extension of the Portia Gold Mine, which will result in continuing gold production for at least another 12 months.
“Our joint hard-won mining experience at Portia combined with the infrastructure support now in place means that we have de-risked this second stage of the project to a large degree.
“We are hopeful that our ongoing drilling will outline additional economic gold mineralisation that will allow continued expansion of Portia going forward.
“Our recent pit floor drilling shows we are also in the fortunate position of having significant amounts of gold bearing saprolite material immediately below the current open pit floor that was not included in the original resource.”