Focus Minerals (ASX: FML) is pleased to announce that it has commenced long-hole stoping operations at The Mount project, which will play a key role in enabling the Company to hit its production target of 100,000 ounces in calendar 2011.
The Mount commenced production from development ore in late March, and with the start of stoping operations Focus expects to significantly ramp up production through the September quarter.
“The commencement of stoping is an important milestone, not just in this new mine’s development, but also for the company as we continue to transform our operations and production outlook,” Focus Minerals Chief Executive Campbell Baird said.
“We’ve come a significant way in just a few months by diversifying from one mine to three operations, which is seeing our production profile quite heavily weighted to the second-half of the year as these begin to build.”
Mr Baird said Focus has developed two levels at The Mount, where stoping operations have now commenced. The company has also completed a 200m exploration cross cut, enabling it to access around 10 gold-bearing structures within The Mount resource footprint.
“This week the first single boom jumbo commenced development on a number of structures and a second jumbo is expected to start at the end of the month,” said Mr Baird.
“An underground diamond rig is also due to arrive in June to enable us to begin testing down plunge and strike extensions of some of the outlying structures,” he said.
The Mount is situated at Widgiemooltha, approximately 85km south of Focus’ Three Mile Hill processing plant in Coolgardie and its existing Tindals Mining centre which comprises an established underground operation and newly developed open pit operation.