Barrick’s Tanzanian Mines on Track for Production Guidance, Well-Placed to Extend Lives
All amounts expressed in US dollars unless stated otherwise
BULYANHULU GOLD MINE, Tanzania, Oct. 10, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- (NYSE:GOLD) (TSX:ABX) – Barrick Gold Corporation’s Tanzanian mines, North Mara and Bulyanhulu, are both set to meet their 2021 production targets as well as to replace depleted reserves through brownfields exploration, president and chief executive Mark Bristow said here today.
Speaking at the mine to local media, Bristow said the production ramp-up at Bulyanhulu was gaining momentum with plant performance ahead of expectations and recoveries at a consistent rate of 93%. An 11% increase in tonnage was driven partly by an investment in three new fully automated loaders and three additional drills. Successful conversion and optimization of mineral resources in the upper portion of Deep West has been completed and is expected to add significant mineral reserves to the asset base, unlocking further value in the mine plan. In line with its long-term commitment to Tanzania, Barrick has also secured exploration targets elsewhere within Bulyanhulu’s mining licence.
Still at Bulyanhulu, a world-class analytical photon assay laboratory — the first of its kind in Africa and in Barrick’s global operations — has been commissioned. This new technique delivers faster, safer and more accurate analysis of gold, silver and complementary elements. This system provides an environmentally friendly, chemical-free, more sustainable replacement for traditional fire assay methods, significantly reducing CO2 emissions and hazardous waste. A new crusher was also commissioned and is being optimized to support increasing production.
At North Mara the commissioning of a brine treatment plant is scheduled for the fourth quarter of this year as part of Barrick’s successful drive to eliminate the mine’s historical environmental issues. This has also included a new water treatment plant and an upgraded tailings facility. During the past quarter the mine’s Gokona underground operation was connected to the national power grid, which will cut its diesel consumption by 43%. North Mara’s two open pits have been redesigned and integrated with the underground mine.
Bristow said Barrick was continuing to improve the quality of life in the villages around North Mara, in partnership with the mine’s community development committee. Key projects include construction of a tarmac road, classrooms, paediatric wards and laboratories, and support for agribusiness.