HARARE, (The Source) – London-listed junior miner Vast Resources on Monday said production at its Pickstone-Peerless Gold mine in Zimbabwe grew to 2,974 ounces compared to 2,808oz over the same period last year despite a fall in milled ore.
The miner said high rainfall had hampered opencast mining activity, with ore milled dropping to 51,102 tonnes from 54,237 tonnes milled over the same period in 2016 as the wet, sticky ore restricted the crusher feed facilities.
The group said lower grade areas in the open-pit were mined as they remained accessible and low-grade stockpiles were used to supplement volumes.
Vast said the construction of the sulphide processing plant is underway and expects first sulphide production in the third quarter of the year.
The evaluation of nearby Giant Gold Mine, which has a current inferred resource of 500,000oz of gold, was ongoing, it added.
A toll treatment plant to process ore from nearby artisanal mining operations was commissioned during the quarter.
Vast Resources owns 50 percent of the Chegutu mine, with the other half being controlled by Grayfox Investments, a consortium of Zimbabwean investors.
In January, it agreed to sell nearly half of its shares in the mine to a Mauritian investment company — SSCG Africa Holdings (SSA) — for $4 million to minimise exposure to economic uncertainty in the country, including the possible impact of bond notes, a quasi-Zimbabwean currency that trades at par with the greenback.