Quarterly Report 31 December 2006
Life of mine scheduling at Morila anticipates production for 2007 to be approximately 500 000 ounces. Morila continues to be a significant cash generator with no debt and no hedging.
Loulo's 2007 production is scheduled to exceed 250 000 ounces. The underground development at Yalea is underway and should access first ore towards the end of 2007 with full production due in 2009. Yalea is the first of the two Loulo underground mines, and is currently a bigger ore body with higher grades than the Gara deposit. The underground mines are expected to not only add life to Loulo but to increase levels of annual production to in excess of 400 000 ounces in 2011.
Total cash costs for the group are estimated to increase year on year between 10% and 15% depending on diesel price assumptions and gold price which impacts on Mali Government royalties paid.
The final feasibility study has commenced at Tongon. This will take some 24 months and cost around US$10 million.
In the coming year, the Group plans to spend similar amounts to 2006 on its investment in exploration and corporate.
The company plans to retain its focus on organic growth through discovery and development of world class orebodies. It will also continue to monitor the markets for value creating and or strategic M&A opportunities.