Russian gold and silver miner Polymetal has more than doubled the ore reserves at the Veduga gold deposit to 2.8-million ounces, which the company said on Thursday should be helpful for potential acquirers of the asset.
The updated reserve estimate comprises 18.9-million tonnes of ore with an average grade of 4.6 g/t, containing 2.8-million ounces of gold. This represents a 111% increase in gold contained.
The openpit reserves increased by 31% to 0.8-million ounces of gold contained, or about 28% of total reserves, at an average grade of 3.8 g/t.
The estimate incorporates results from 57 additional diamond drill holes that were drilled in 2017 and 2018 at a total cost of $5-million, or $5/oz of newly added reserves.
"The new reserve numbers confirm that Veduga is large, high-grade, and is likely to be larger still,” Polymetal CEO Vitaly Nesis said in a statement on Thursday.
Veduga is a high-grade refractory gold deposit located in a prolific Northern Yenisey gold belt in the Krasnoyarsk region. Polymetal has been a partial owner of the property since 2006 with the original 50% stake acquired through the joint venture with AngloGold Ashanti and subsequently diluted by external equity financing. In October 2018, Polymetal increased its ownership in Veduga to 74.3%.
Veduga comprises four licence plots with the total area of 18 km2.
Currently, mining at Veduga focuses on high-grade openpit, which supplies ore for processing at Polymetal's Varvara mill with concentrate subsequently treated at the Amursk POX.Creamer Media Senior Researcher and Deputy Editor Online