The feasibility study concluded that the project could recover some 674 000 oz of gold over the first six years of operation, through a 1.8-million-ton-a-year plant, based on a mineral resource of 19.7-million tons, at 2.45 g/t gold.
The project was expected to have a life-of-mine of some nine years, with the final years of gold production scheduled to come from low-grade stockpile. Further infill drilling and regional exploration success would allow the scheduling of this stockpile to be deferred and replaced with processing of higher grade ore.
The project would require a capital investment of some $160-million, and would have a net present value of $237-million, assuming a $1 600/oz gold price.
“The feasibility study confirms the Woodlark Island gold project is technically sound and economically viable with robust project economics,” said MD Lee Spencer.
“The study also vindicates our decision to conduct further infill drilling, thereby increasing ore reserves, enabling us to increase plant capacity and bolstering project economics.”
Spencer noted that the company would now move to lodge applications for key project approvals with the PNG government and advance financing options for the project.
“This is an exciting period for the project development as the company moves closer to producer status,” he added.
Environmental studies for the project would also be submitted during the fourth quarter of this year.