Monument has commenced the Preliminary Economic Assessment Study (PEA) program at Burnakura Gold Project, located in Western Australia to further advance planned early stage production.
President and CEO Cathy Zhai commented, "Following the readiness of the Burnakura early stage production, the Company has extended its economic study program to include further metallurgical studies, processing plant upgrade potential, open pit mine design optimization and underground opportunities. While funding for production is progressing and results from additional study are encouraging, we are happy to see a movement now to conclude the results in the PEA study under NI 43-101 standards."
Monument anticipates completing the PEA in April 2018. This will not impact start-up work already in place for plant construction at Burnakura, subject to financing, to place the Burnakura operation into production.
In the PEA study, the open pit mine optimisation used in previous scoping study, comprising several cut backs of existing pits mined by previous owners, will be reworked with current cost and recovery assumptions and findings from the recently completed PEA geotechnical study conducted by Peter O'Bryan and Associates. In addition, the underground mining potential at NOA 7/8 will be included in the life of mine study work. Extended mine production areas potentially allow the existing CIL plant to be upgraded by adding a 500KTPA mill from the existing 260KTPA mill in replacement of a proposed heap leach facility to achieve much better reliability and higher performance of production. Additional geological data compilation and metallurgical studies are also included in the PEA study.
SRK Consulting has been engaged as the Independent Qualified Person for the PEA study. The study will be self-funded and be completed mostly in-house by the Monument Mining technical team in Perth within the NI 43-101 technical report framework. Additional contract and consulting work now commenced including: Geotechnical studies by Peter O'Bryan and Associates (now complete), a 500 KTPA processing plant upgrade scoping study by COMO Engineers, Metallurgical study by Orway Mineral Consultants Pty Ltd, Underground mining study and evaluation for NOA 7/8 by Pit N Portal Group-Underground Mining Contractors (in progress).