Blanket Mine Q1 gold production up 9pct to 307kg

Blanket Mine Q1 gold production up 9pct to 307kg

HARARE, April 7 (The Source) – Caledonia Mining Corporation says its Blanket Mine near Gwanda produced 10,822 ounces (306,8 kilogrammes) of gold in the first quarter to March 31 and expects to meet its full year target of 50,000oz on improved second half performance.

The figure represents an 8.7 percent increase on the 9,960oz produced in the same period last year. However, it is six percent lower than the 11,518oz produced in the fourth quarter to December last year due to the shut down over the New Year and Easter holiday periods.

“Towards the end of the first quarter, production commenced from below 750 meters via the No. 6 Winze and an additional decline development into the AR South ore body. We remain on target to achieve our full year production target of 50,000 ounces,” said Caledonia’s chief executive Steve Curtis in an update on Thursday.

Quarterly production for the remainder of 2016 is expected to increase progressively to approximately 14,000ounces by the fourth quarter of 2016 as production increases.

Caledonia owns 49 percent of Blanket Mine.

In February this year, it announced that it had sold forward 15,000 ounces of gold production under a six-month collar and cap arrangement.

The hedge arrangement, which set up the gold price between $1,050 per ounce and $1,080 per ounce would give it greater clarity over cashflows until July 2016 when production at the mine is expected to ramp up.