West African-focused gold company Cora Gold has received an environmental permit for the Sanankoro Gold Project in southern Mali.

The permit marks a ‘key milestone’ for the firm as it advances the development of the Sanankoro project towards the production phase.

Cora CEO Bert Monro said: “We are delighted to be awarded our environmental permit, following the completion and submission of our ESIA in July 2022. 

“The award of this permit recognises the high standards that we have set for the company as we move forwards towards construction, with all environmental work being completed in alignment with the International Finance Corporation Performance Standards.”

The firm said it submitted the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) of the project to Direction Nationale de l’Assainissement et du Contrôle des Pollutions et des Nuisances (‘DNACPN’), the governing administration for environmental matters in Mali earlier this year.

At that time, Cora Gold CEO Bert Monro said: “The ESIA, completed in accordance with Malian requirements for Environmental Permitting and in alignment with good international industry practice including the International Finance Corporation Performance Standards, upholds Cora’s commitment to excellence and working with our host communities to ensure an optimum outcome for all our stakeholders for the development of the Sanankoro Gold Project.

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The work programme under the ESIA involved an integrated environmental and social management programme, a conceptual closure and rehabilitation plan, a resettlement policy framework and a community development plan, among others.

Located in the Yanfolila Gold Belt, southern Mali, the Sanankoro Project Area comprises the Bokoro II, Bokoro Est, Dako II, Kodiou and Sanankoro II permits, covering 342km²​.

According to the mineral resource estimate, the project has resources of 24.9 million tonnes at 1.15g/t Au for a total of 920koz of Au.