Mt Muro mine to be put on care and maintenance, divested

Straits Resources is placing its Mt Muro mine into care and maintenance.

It comes after Straits attempted to implement a 'turn-around strategy' for the mine, attempting to put it into a 'cashflow positive position". 

It redesigned the mine plan to reduce waste movements without reducing gold production, took costs out of the business, and engaged more with the local communities.

However "despite this progress a number of unforeseen challenges have impacted the timing for Mt Muro to be in a cashflow positive position, including falling gold and silver prices as well as the impact of illegal miners".

"These challenges culminated in the incident of 29 June when illegal miners caused damage to several buildings, vehicles, and equipment."

Due to this the Board came to the decision that the miner is "no longer in a position to continue providing material funding to support the Mt Muro mine, and has placed operations on care and maintenance as of Friday 2 August, and is actively seeking to dispose of the asset as soon as possible".

Straits chairman Andre Labuschange stated that "our first preference has always been to try to turn the operation around; however a weak pricing environment, and the recent disruptions on site have impacted our ability to continue to fund the mine until the operations can become cash self-sufficient".

"The Board has decided that the continued allocation of material funding to the Mt Muro operations could potentially risk the future of the group, and has made this difficult but necessary decision in order to conserve shareholder value.

"We are working hard to find potential buyers for the asset and are in preliminary discussions with several parties."

The miner is now turning focus back to its copper portfolio and its flagship Tritton mine, which exceeded production guidance over the March quarter.


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