16/06/2021 - 10:22

Wiluna Mining completes sulphide gold development funding

16/06/2021 - 10:22

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Wiluna Mining Corporation has wrapped up its US$42 million term loan from commodity trader Mercuria and says stage one sulphide gold expansion to more than 120,000 ounces per annum and feasibility study work on its next phase of growth are now fully funded. The FS on lifting annual output at Wiluna in WA past 240,000 ounces is expected to be completed this year.

Underground drilling at Wiluna Mining Corporation’s major Wiuna gold mining centre in WA’s north Eastern Goldfields. Credit: File

Wiluna Mining Corporation has wrapped up its US$42 million term loan from commodity trader Mercuria and says stage one sulphide gold expansion to more than 120,000 ounces per annum and feasibility study work on its next phase of growth are now fully funded. The feasibility study on lifting annual output at the Wiluna gold centre in WA past 240,000 ounces is expected to be completed this year.

Perth-based Wiluna Mining says the term loan is the final piece of funding for stage 1 development at Wiluna, including construction of a new concentrator and significant underground development and infrastructure improvements. Stage 1 works are said to be on track for completion in October this year.

After stage 1 ramp-up the company expects to be producing about 120,000 ounces of gold a year in concentrate and gold dore.

Wiluna Mining Executive Chair, Milan Jerkovic said: “Stage 1 is progressing towards an October 2021 completion and commissioning, and our feasibility study is expected to be completed by the end of December 2021 which should allow us to commence stage 2 development in the middle of 2022.”

Wiluna says the four-year loan has a LIBOR plus-9.5 per cent interest rate and associated gold hedging contracts for 159,000 ounces to be delivered over the term of the loan at a price of US$1,820.30/ounce starting in December this year.

Wiluna Mining has one of the Australian gold sector’s largest single-mine resource positions and continues to explore aggressively to grow reserves to support a build-up in both underground sulphide and free-milling ore production.

The historically significant Wiluna field has produced 4.7 million ounces of gold from more than 20 open pits and 10 underground lodes. Wiluna Mining is today sitting on 7.02 million ounces of resources including 26.9 million tonnes at an attractive 4.89 g/t for 4.24 million ounces “under the headframe” in the Wiluna Mining Centre.

The shallow scope of tens of kilometres of underground workings over a 6km horizon at Wiluna compares well with other major WA goldfields production hubs such as the neighbouring Yandal base of Northern Star Resources.

The company has a target to outline a further 5-7 million ounces, including a high proportion of 4.5-to-7 g/t ounces at depth, based on a wealth of historic and new exploration data.

One of the WA gold sector’s most intensive ongoing drilling programs has already grown Wiluna’s underground reserves to 661,000 ounces at an average 4.74 g/t and the company plans to add at least 500,000 ounces to that this year.

 

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