Nevsun Resources has reached commercial production for the copper expansion at its Bisha mine in Eritrea after commissioning its flotation plant.

The company said since commissioning started early in the third quarter of 2013, the operation had produced about 60,000t of copper concentrate and it is on track to meet its guidance of 30-50 million pounds of copper in 2013.

Nevsun Resources president Cliff Davis said the company is looking forward to significant 2014 cashflow to add to its balance sheet.

"Our continuing success can be attributed to our staff, contractors and the support of the Government of Eritrea," Davis added.

"The State has understood from the beginning that responsible development of the mining industry has the potential to be a significant economic catalyst to the country over the next several years."

Davis noted that the company has also received support from the Ministry of Energy and Mines and the Eritrean National Mining Corporation.

The plant in the past month had been achieving more than 80% of its targeted metrics of feed grade, recovery rates, and copper produced in concentrate.

The company said the transportation logistics from site to Massawa port were working well and Bisha had made three ocean shipments totalling approximately $60m in value, with another ship loading shortly in Massawa.

Pre-commercial production sales proceeds and production costs to-date will be capitalised against the build cost.

The built cost of the copper plant and infrastructure was about $110m, compared to a budget of $125m.