LONDON (Alliance News) – Anglo Asian Mining PLC on Monday said production in the first half of 2017 fell by 22% compared to the previous year, and said it has confidence in its full year guidance.
The miner based in Azerbaijan said it produced a total of 28,554 ounces of gold equivalent – made up of gold, silver and copper – in the first six months of the year, down from 36,729 gold equivalent ounces a year earlier.
For 2017 as a whole, the miner is aiming to produce between 64,000 ounces to 72,000 ounces of gold equivalent, which will be down from the 72,304 ounces produced over the whole of 2016.
For the second quarter to the end of June, total production was higher year-on-year after rising to 14,775 gold equivalent ounces from 13,779 ounces.
“This has been a strong quarter for Anglo Asian with a 7% increase in production to 14,775 ounces expressed as gold equivalent ounces despite the introduction of our production optimisation activities which we had anticipated would temporarily impact our production profile,” said Chief Executive Reza Vaziri.
In terms of second quarter sales, Anglo Asian Mining sold 7,406 ounces of gold bullion at an average price of USD1,258 per ounce and shipped a total of 3,166 dry metric tonnes of copper for a total of USD6.1 million. In the first quarter of 2017, it sold 8,283 ounces at an average price of USD1,220 per ounce while copper shipments of 2,230 dry metric tonnes were worth USD4.4 million.
Net debt at the end of June stood at USD29.0 million, having fallen from USD33.1 million at the end of March.
“Our net debt also continues to decrease. The continuation of mining activities at the Gedabek open pit, whilst simultaneously developing the new open pit at the Ugur deposit, was possible due to careful utilisation of equipment and personnel. Maintaining production during this phase of optimisation is a significant achievement for Anglo Asian and puts us in a strong position as we look to increase production from current levels with the introduction of ore from Ugur in the fourth quarter of 2017,” said Vaziri.
Anglo Asian Mining said it continues to make solid progress with its water treatment plant and said installation of the plant is finished. Commissioning is expected to start imminently and take around two weeks to complete.
Development of the new Ugur gold deposit continues on schedule with good progress being made building the road between the deposit and the company’s processing facilities. A full update on the exploration and development activities at Ugur is anticipated before the end of this month.
Anglo Asian shares were up 6.1% on Monday at 18.62 pence per share.
By Joshua Warner; email@example.com; @JoshAlliance
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