Mining has commenced at Calidus’ Warrawoona gold project, with ore now being delivered to the run-of-mine (ROM) pad.
Construction of the East Pilbara project is 53 per cent complete with the primary crusher installed and preliminary works for the semi-autogenous grinding (SAG) mill underway.
Calidus managing director Dave Reeves said he was pleased with the progress made at Warrawoona, indicating the project is on course to commence production next year.
“We are now more than over 50 per cent built and we are well on track for first gold in the June quarter of 2022,” Reeves said.
“Delivery of first ore to the ROM pad is always an important marker in a project’s development and confirms we are on track to be Australia’s next gold producer.
“As we complete the tailings dam, we will open up the mining area in preparation for the main mining equipment, which is due to arrive in Q1 2022.”
In April, Calidus executed its final project loan facility agreements for a $110 million loan from Macquarie Bank.
The loan has been divided into a Facility A Senior Secured Loan of $85 million and a Facility B of $25 million mezzanine debt, with Facility B fully drawn and $8 million of Facility A drawn to this point.
This comes alongside company’s power purchase agreement (PPA) with Zenith Energy which will see the energy provider supply eight megawatts of power to the gold project.
Warrawoona is forecast to produce up to 105,000 ounces of gold per year, which is expected to increase to 139,000 ounces when its Blue Spec gold deposit, located 70 kilometres away, is developed.
Blue Spec is the subject of a definitive feasibility study due in the June quarter of 2022.