Tue | Sep 26, 2017

Aurora gold mine production on track

Published:Wednesday | July 20, 2016 | 7:00 AM

Canadian-owned Guyana Goldfields Inc, operators of Aurora Gold Mines, has produced over 75,000 ounces of gold for the first half of this year, earning the company a commendation from Prime Minister of Guyana Moses Nagamootoo.

Guyana Goldfields began extracting gold from Aurora in mid-2015. It reported production of 35,901 ounces in a four-month period ending December.

"Aurora Gold Mines is a very bright spot in the entire scheme of things, in relation to how the economy will grow and be able to produce not only employment and growth, but social benefits to our people," said Prime Minister Nagamootoo on a visit to the company's mining operations in Cuyuni-Mazaruni.

"I believe that anywhere you go and receive a report of production of 75,000 ounces of gold for the half-year, I think that's excellent. I am very impressed with this visit of this mine. Aurora Gold Mines is doing well for the country," the prime minister said, praising the company for its safety and environmental measures.

Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman said Guyana Goldfields "is surpassing even our targets, because at the beginning we anticipated just about 100,000 ounces. It would appear that we will go beyond that for this mine alone, because at the end of June they had already done close to 76,000 ounces, so we are doing very well ... the returns are good and this company is leading the way".

Guyana Goldfields itself has set a target of 130,000 to 150,000 ounces for 2016, according to a release on its year-end financial results issued by the company back in March. The current performance suggests it will hit the higher end of that range.

Guyana Goldfields employs around 500 workers.

"This is an example of a good investment. The rewards are showing now and they are encouraging for new investors," said Prime Minister Nagamootoo. "There are plans in terms of expanding production areas, in terms of producing alternative energy; accommodating the workforce in an environment that is more permanent; in terms of health considerations; securit; and the supply of food."