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Iamgold pours first bullion at Côté project in Ontario

The Côté gold mine has poured its first doré bar as the project advances toward commercial production. The mine, located 125 km southwest of Timmins, Ontario, is owned 70% and operated by Iamgold (TSX: IMG; NYSE: IAG), 30% owned by Sumitomo Metals Mining.

“I am delighted to announce that Côté gold achieved the milestone of first gold pour, less than 90 days since the start of the pre-commissioning activities,” said Renaud Adams, president and CEO of Iamgold.

“This achievement represents the culmination of over 15 million hours of work over four years of construction – an incredible effort for the team on the ground as the project cost to first gold remains in line with the updated budget estimate while maintaining a near impeccable safety record.”

Commissioning activities at Côté are progressing well with the crushing, high-pressure grinding rolls (HPGR), and processing circuits performing as expected, including power consumption. Commercial production will be declared in the third quarter with the goal of ending this year at a 90% throughput rate. On a 100% basis, guidance this year is to produce between 220,000 and 290,000 oz. of  gold, assuming the remaining commissioning activities go according to plan.

This mine will be one of Canada’s largest gold producers with an 18-year mine life. During the first six years of operation, Côté gold output will be 495,000 oz., and over the life of the mine, it will average 365,000 oz. per year.

The Côté mine has proven and probable reserves of 234.6 million tonnes grading 1.01 g/t gold and containing 7.6 million oz. of gold. Reserves are included in measured and indicated resources, which are 444.8 million tonnes at 0.84 g/t and containing almost 2.3 million oz. of gold. There are also inferred resources of 60.6 million tonnes at 0.61 g/t and containing 714,000 oz. of gold.

Côté is the first gold mining project in North America designed and built for a fully automated haulage fleet.

“Further, this is just the beginning for Côté, as we believe the project is the start of what will ultimately turn into a new mining district that will be a mining hub for decades to come,” added Adams.

With Côté gold online, Iamgold now has three operating mines, including Essakane in Burkina Faso and Westwood in Quebec.

Source: MINING.COM – Read More