13/06/2013 - 13:43

Phoenix, Aphrodite advance new plans

13/06/2013 - 13:43


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Phoenix, Aphrodite advance new plans
Phoenix Gold managing director Jon Price.

Phoenix Gold and Aphrodite Gold have delivered some rare good news for the sector, with Aphrodite announcing plans to build a new processing plant near Kalgoorlie and Phoenix to develop a new mine.

Aphrodite said its project, which is subject to obtaining financing, would be the first new ore processing plant to be developed in the Kalgoorlie region for the past 20 years.

The planned Aphrodite gold mine will be the cornerstone for initial production anticipated to commence from late 2015.

Aphrodite said the plant will be able to process up to 1 million tonnes of ore per annum, with the ability to increase that capacity to 1.5 million tonnes.

Gold production is forecast at an initial rate of around 30, 000 ounces per annum from oxide material, increasing to more than 100, 000 ounces per annum within four years.

The company is working to complete the prefeasibility study for the mine and process plant.

The Aphrodite mine operating life is currently projected at near 10 years.

To improve project economics and the long-term life of the project, Aphrodite has begun negotiations with a number of more advanced regional gold companies for off-take agreements or to sell their ore to the company.

The plant and its components are being designed by project engineers, Tetra Tech, and consultants, Mineral Engineering Technical Services.

Aphrodite chairman Peter Buttigieg said "the history of the Eastern Goldfields bodes well for building a much needed new refractory ore processing plant. Such development will lift the prospects of regional miners and explorers and would be a bonus for the city of Kalgoorlie."

"The company's plan is underpinned by a multiple financing strategy. In addition to its channel to large China-based investors, the company will complement this with existing funding partners and advanced gold hedging strategies being developed by its financial advisors".

Aphrodite is in negotiation with China-based investors to buy into the Aphrodite Gold Project.

Meanwhile, Phoenix said it will go ahead with development at its Blue Funnel gold mine in the Goldfields, despite continued weakness in international gold markets.

The initial three month stage of development at the mine is expected to deliver Phoenix near term cash flow of $3 million, based on a gold price of $1,350/ounce.

Total cash costs for stage one will come in at $981/oz, Phoenix said.

Managing director Jon Price said development of the Blue Funnel mine to generate cash flow had always been a core part of the company's strategy.

"It now delivers an even greater benefit given the tough financial markets currently facing the junior resources and gold sectors," Mr Price said.

"The cost of doing business in the Goldfields is improving and we are evaluating a number of our smaller projects for development in addition to completing our larger scale projects as part of the definitive feasibility study, due in December this year."



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