Dacian Gold is set to begin commercial production at the Mt Morgans gold operation (MMGO) near Laverton in Western Australia by the end of this month.
The company has started ore development at the Allanson underground production decline. Allanson is the third underground decline at the Mt Morgans Westralia Mine Area, with the other two being Beresford South and Beresford North.
Mining activities are also ongoing at the Beresford South and Beresford North production declines. According to the company, stope mining is expected to begin at Beresford North later this week.
Under Dacian’s production plan, each of the three deposits is expected to produce on average 1,000tpd from combined stoping and development activities.
Dacian Gold executive chairman Rohan Williams said: “The start of ore development at our third underground production decline at Allanson marks another important step in the ramp-up with mining activities across all three underground mining centres.
“This, together with continued strong progress at the Jupiter open-pit, means we are confident of achieving commercial production, as planned, by the end of 2018 as we progressively increase production in each of the successive quarters during the year.
“As previously indicated, production is weighted towards the second half of FY2019 as we mine higher grade open-pit ore in the Cornwall Shear Zone at Heffernans within the Jupiter pit and increase the rate of stoping activities at Westralia across the three mining production fronts, including the higher grade Allanson deposit.”
At the end of the September 2018 quarter, the company was producing around 1,900tpd from Westralia, with Beresford South accounting for the majority of ore.
During the 2019 financial year, Dacian is targeting production of 180,000oz-210,000oz.
The company spent around $A200m ($143.89m) towards the development of MMGO. The project also includes Jupiter open-pit mining operations, and achieved first gold production in the March 2018 quarter.