Perseus Mining has contracted privately-owned EPSA Internacional for the development of its third gold mine, Yaouré in Côte d’Ivoire, West Africa.
The mining services contract involves the movement of around 170 million tonnes of material, including 27 million tonnes of ore containing more than 1.5 million ounces of gold.
This will run for a period of 65 months starting from November 2020. Mobilisation of equipment to site is expected to commence in the March 2020 quarter.
EPSA will employ and train a predominantly Ivorian workforce to prepare for the contract.
The Spain-headquartered contractor employs around 4000 employees and deploys nearly 1600 pieces of equipment across 15 countries internationally.
It provides mining, civil works and earthmoving services to a blue-chip list of mining clients such as Newmont Goldcorp and Agnico Eagle.
The contract award to EPSA is the culmination of a competitive tendering process participated by eight West African and international mining contractors, according to Perseus.
Company managing director and chief executive Jeff Quartermaine believes the Yaouré contract award is an important milestone in bringing the gold mine into production.
“As well as offering a competitive price, EPSA currently has equipment available for immediate mobilisation and has a proven track record of establishing greenfield mining sites in jurisdictions where employment and training of personnel from local catchment communities is a priority,” Quartermaine said.
“When Yaouré is fully operational, Perseus will be producing in excess of 500,000 ounces of gold per year.
“The average all-in site cost of producing gold at Yaouré over the first five years of the mine is forecast to be $US734 ($1077.3) per ounce, meaning that if gold prices are maintained at current levels, then very strong cashflows will be generated and available for funding benefits for our stakeholders.”