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Multi-commodity mining and development firm Mwana Africa has reported a 25% decrease in gold production from Freda Rebecca mine in Zimbabwe, to 13,072oz during the quarter ended 31 December 2013.

The decline in production was attributable to a mill being unavailable because of engineering down-time and shut downs.

The company said that the mill is currently undergoing modifications that would lead to improved throughput.

Mwana Africa said production was also impacted by a drop in head grade from the temporary cessation of mining at its open pit operations.

However, the company’s 75%-owned subsidiary Bindura Nickel saw an increase of more than 76% in nickel-in-concentrate sales to 2,651t from its Trojan operation in Zimbabwe.

At the Klipspringer diamond mine in South Africa, mining and treatment operations started on 7 October 2013 and to date the slimes re-treatment programme has produced 6,114ct at an average price of $22.75 per carat.

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By GlobalData

A steady state production of 22,560t per month is planned from February this year onwards, at the Klipspringer mine.

Mwana Africa CEO Kalaa Mpinga said that, operationally, it has been a mixed quarter for the company.

"We are very pleased with the progress at Trojan and this demonstrates the robustness of the asset. Freda Rebecca, however, had a difficult quarter due to reduced mill availabilities," Mpinga said.

"The proceeds from diamond sales will contribute to the care and maintenance costs at Klipspringer. Management time will continue to be focused on operational improvements and delivery of the ongoing cost-cutting exercise during Q4."