PRODUCTION at OceanaGold’s Didipio Gold-Copper Project in northern Luzon is expected to increase when underground production is delivered at the end of the year. Gold and copper production at the project has decreased this year with the cessation of open pit mining.
|Construction of the paste fill facility which will be utilised for the Didipio underground operations.|
During the June quarter there were 42,899 ounces of gold and 4322 tonnes of copper produced while in the first half of the year gold production totalled 105,647 ounces and copper production 10,277 tonnes. All in Sustaining Costs at Didipio in the quarter were US$147 per ounce while in the first half AISC was $15 per ounce.
Didipio production was lower with the head grade decreasing following the end of open pit mining resulting in a higher proportion of lower grade stockpiled ore being processed.
The company remains on track to deliver on guidance this year for the sixth consecutive year. The total guidance for all operations in the Philippines, New Zealand and the US is 550,000-600,000 ounces and total copper production is 18,000-19,000 tonnes.
Exploration continues to prove successful with infill and extensional programs at Didipio and testing of near-mine targets.
During the June quarter underground infill drilling continued with 28 holes completed for 5407 metres. All holes intersected mineralisation and significant results include 120 metres @ 3.2 g/t gold and 0.7% copper, 123 metres @ 2.2 g/t gold and 0.5% copper, and 92 metres @ 3.67 g/t gold and 0.5% copper.
Exploration continues within the broader FTAA area with detailed surface mapping and sampling at the D’Fox, Chinichinga, Napartan and Radio prospects. Drill targets have been identified at D’Fox and future drilling will test the northern down plunge extension of mineralisation.
At Chinichinga, surface mapping revealed exposures of monzonite and quartz-monzosyenite porphyry, similar to that of Didipio deposit. Follow-up of coincident in soil anomalies at Napartan identified gold-copper mineralised pegmatitic dykes also being of similar composition to those characterising Didipio. Both locations will undergo further detailed mapping to understand the significance of these results.
Recent geological mapping and soil sampling of Radio prospect has identified widespread, steeply dipping, auriferous quartz veins and breccias coincident with anomalous copper and gold in soils.