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August 11, 2014 15:23

Kumtor boosts gold output 11% in H1

BISHKEK. Aug 11 (Interfax) - Gold output at Kumtor, the largest gold mine in Kyrgyzstan, was 5.6 tonnes in H1 2014, up 11% year-on-year, CJSC Kumtor Operating Company said in a statement.

"At the Kumtor mine, gold production in the second quarter was 2,422 kg (or 77,860 ounces) compared to 2,251 kg (or 72,365 ounces) in the same quarter in 2013 as Kumtor processed stockpiled ore from cut-back 15 that was mined during the fourth quarter of 2013. The increase in ounces poured was due to processing more tonnes with a higher average mill head grade than the comparative period," the statement said.

During the first half of 2014, Kumtor's mill head grade averaged 2.5 grams per tonne with a recovery of 74.7%.

In the reporting period, the enterprise sold 5.57 tonnes of gold, total sales revenue was $231.5 million.

Capital expenditures were $209.6 million, from which $21.2 million went towards sustaining capital, $13.3 million towards growth capital and $175 million towards capitalized stripping.

Payments to the national budget in taxes, transfers to Kyrgyzstan's Social Fund and other mandatory payments totaled $58 million, the statement said.

"We are happy to report that during the second quarter the Kumtor mine obtained approvals of its 2014 mine plan allowing the operations to continue uninterrupted. The results obtained allow us to count on the successful achievement of our 2014 guidance," the statement cited Michael Fischer, President of Kumtor Gold Company, as saying.

"According to estimates, Kumtor mine will produce between 550,000 and 600,000 ounces or 17.1-18.7 tonnes in 2014 and, similar to 2013, over 50% of this gold production is expected during the fourth quarter when mining will reach the high-grade section of the SB Zone," the statement said.

"The projected capital expenditures for 2014, excluding capitalized stripping, are estimated to be $86 million of which $43 million will be spending on sustaining capital, including the major overhaul maintenance of the mine equipment, purchase of ball mill girth gear, tailings dam construction raise and other items. Growth capital investment at Kumtor is forecast at $43 million and includes the relocation of certain infrastructure at Kumtor related to the KS-13 life-of-mine expansion plan, dewatering projects and purchase of new mining equipment," it said.

"Capitalized stripping costs (cash) are expected to be $181 million in 2014," the statement said.

CJSC Kumtor Gold Company and CJSC Kumtor Operating Company are subsidiaries of the Canadian mining company, Centerra Gold. The first is a management company responsible for operating activities and the second conducts general economic planning and management.

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