Kirkland Lake Gold’s Fosterville mine in Victoria is on track to reach its 2018 production guidance on the back of a record nine-month output.
Fosterville, with 231,923 ounces, has experienced a 26 per cent increase in production compared with the same period last year.
This was achieved with a lower all-in sustaining cost for year-to-date 2018 at $738 against the target range of $750–800, representative of a 9 per cent improvement from 2017.
Kirkland has twice lifted its full year 2018 production guidance for Fosterville. The first increase was to 275,000–300,000oz from 260,000–300,000; it then revised this target to 300,000–310,000oz in the latest update.
President and chief executive Tony Makuch said, “Based on our performance to date, we have been able to announce significant improvements to our 2018 consolidated production and unit cost guidance for a second time during the year.
“In addition, the third quarter of 2018 provided a clear demonstration of our company’s ability to internally fund the growth projects needed to reach out goal of a million ounces per year of production.”
Kirkland Lake has progressed three key projects at Fosterville during the quarter, including a new ventilation system, construction of a paste-fill plant and a new water treatment plant.
Fosterville has also completed and commissioned a second gravity gold circuit in the mine mill, which immediately improved the amount of coarse gold being recovered through the mill to well over 50 per cent of total ounces produced.
Makuch said, “We expect additional growth in mineral reserves and mineral resources, particularly at Fosterville, and will continue to accelerate progress with our growth projects.”
Kirkland Lake’s drilling in the Swan zone has returned exceptionally high-grade intersections, which highlights the potential for improved mineral reserves at Fosterville.
“Entering the fourth quarter, we are positioned for a strong finish to 2018. Our operations are poised to deliver another quarter of solid production, cost and financial results,” Makuch said.
“While still finalising our budgets, we can look ahead to 2019 as another year of strong results and progress, including higher levels of production, continued low unit costs and solid financial performance.”