Ora Banda Mining is planning to strip back its Goldfields Davyhurst gold mining operation to become a single deposit mine in the short term to maximise cashflows. Mining of the Riverina Stage 1 open pit will cease this quarter and the Sand King stage 1 pre-strip will be deferred until November as the company looks to turn the operation into a leaner, meaner cash cow in the short term.
For now, the gold producer says operations have been streamlined to focus on its Missouri open pit reserve of 130,000 ounces of gold.
It plans to supplement ore recovered from its Missouri open pit with ore from existing surface stockpiles to keep its plant operating at its nameplate capacity of 1.2 million tonnes per annum for the next two years.
Funds generated will be used to fund exploration and resource development whilst it focuses on keeping the plant topped up with a regimen of 100,000 tonnes of ore a month.
Ora Banda says the initial rollout of changes aims to deliver improved productivity, lower costs and build up cash to invest in two years of exploration and development.
Thinking longer-term, Ora Banda will also mull over resource development and sustainable mine production beyond that timeframe.
According to the company, funds from the recent capital raise completed on March 24 are in use, with ongoing programs to support process plant production reliability and stability for operational improvements.
In addition, an allowance has been made for exploration and resource development drilling activities.
The exploration spend will target new discoveries and follow up on the significant first pass air core results across multiple prospects including a 19m strike going 1.5 g/t gold from the Sky prospect, a 4m strike grading 2.64 g/t gold from Greater Pacific and a broader 20m intersection going 1.2 g/t gold from 64m at Sunraysia North.
Looking forward, management says resource development activities will focus on the ‘next mine’ targets, including Riverina Underground where an 18-hole program in August last year yielded solid results including 5m at 16.7 g/t gold from 200m and 1.3m running 25.3 g/t gold from 217.8m.
The hits will be fed into an updated resource estimate for Riverina Underground, currently standing at just over a million tonnes at a respectable grade of 5.6 g/t gold for 183,000 contained ounces.
Ora Banda is also eyeing its Iguana deposit for more development. Iguana hosts a total resource of 2.7m tonne at 2 g/t for 175,000 contained ounces. Notably, drilling reported in June 2021 turned up a series of impressive strikes including a broad 21m hit going 3.2 g/t gold from 69m.
Timing is pretty good too for Ora Banda with the gold price appearing to be making a resurgence towards US$2000 an ounce. Interestingly, well read business magazine, Bloomberg, observed gold has rallied for the fifth day straight, settling on a spot price of US$1968.61 an ounce at 2:37pm in New York.
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