FOCUS PRODUCTION SET FOR SIGNIFICANT BOOST AS MINING STARTS AT THE MOUNT
New high-grade underground mine expected to add 40-60,000oz a year and help reduce costs further
Focus Minerals (ASX: FML) is pleased to announce that it has started mining gold at The Mount underground project in a move it expects will lift its annual production rate by 40-60,000 ounces.
The Mount, which is situated at Widgiemooltha, approximately 80km south of Focus’ Three Mile Hill processing plant in Coolgardie, has a significant inferred resource of 2.1 million tonnes at 5.5g/t for 370,000 ounces (see Table 1). It has already produced more than 34,555 tonnes at 7.78g/t from trial mining.
Focus has a target of 1,500 ounces per vertical metre at The Mount with extraction of 40 vertical metres a year to support annualised production of 40,000 to 60,000 ounces.
In parallel with the start of the new production position at the German lode area, an exploration cross-cut to test mineralisation in the Main and Fuchs lode areas has also commenced.
The exploration cross-cut will test approximately 15 structures as it is developed over the next month, enabling Focus to more accurately assess each structure for mining. The Mount includes approximately 15 parallel sub-vertical lodes across a 300m by 600m area that is open in all directions and at depth, providing substantial upside for additional high-grade reserves.
Focus Chief Executive Campbell Baird said the start of commercial mining at The Mount was significant for investors because it marked the beginning of a second production platform to complement existing underground mining operations at its Tindals Mining Centre in Coolgardie.
“The Mount will give Focus an additional source of high-grade feed for the Three Mile Hill processing facility and, as we move into production through the June Quarter,” Mr Baird said.
“We aim to have The Mount at full scale production by the end of the year.”