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Shanta Gold: Singida resource estimate and NLGM operations update

Published by
Global Mining Review,

Shanta Gold, the East Africa focussed gold producer, has announced a JORC-compliant mineral resource estimate (MRE) on the Singida gold mining project (Singida) in central Tanzania and has provided an operational update for its New Luika gold mine (NLGM), in Southwest Tanzania.

Singida gold mining project

Shanta Gold has reported an updated JORC-compliant mineral resource estimate at Singida totalling 12.3 million t, grading 1.84 g/t and containing 728 koz of gold using a cut-off grade of 1.0 g/t.

The MRE incorporates three mining licenses and seven mineralised zones with a combined strike length of 4.9 km, with widths ranging from 5 -15 m and mineralisation extending approximately 500 m below the topographical surface.

According to the company, Gold Tree 1 – which is at the centre of the three mining licenses – contains measured and indicated resources of 1.1 million t, grading 3.14 g/t gold and contains 111 koz of gold at a cut-off grade of 1.0 g/t is located near to surface (<120 m depth).

New Luika gold mine

On 5 September 2017, Shanta Gold announced a plan to reduce costs by US$5m on an annual basis at NLGM.

According to the company, this has now been achieved with cost reductions of US$5.1m executed. This was mostly comprised of renegotiated contracts with suppliers, lower headcount and eliminating non-essential G&A spending.

Further cost reduction initiatives remain ongoing with 45% of Shanta’s supplier contracts (in terms of value) so far having been reviewed or replaced.

The company has also announced the initial results of its operational improvement programme. Highlights include:

  • The creation of a goal to target higher recoveries of over 93%, an improvement of 1.5 - 2% by H2 2018. This follows laboratory scale extended leach test work on increasing residency time through the installation of an additional pre-leach tank. The project will cost around US$0.5m and is expected to have a payback period of 4 months. Assembly and installation is expected in April 2018 with commissioning by the end of June 2018.
  • Revised its mining method for the Luika underground from cut and fill to long hole open stoping. This does not require backfilling with cement, lowering the cost by an estimated US$3.6m in 2018.

Eric Zurrin, CEO of Shanta Gold, commented: “We have made good progress at Singida by declaring a compliant resource and in doing so, increasing Shanta’s total group compliant resources to over 2 million oz. We have identified a number of targets at the project, which we will continue to explore over the coming months, with a view to expanding the potential size of the Singida project and increasing the measured & indicated resource oz.”

“I am also pleased to announce that we have already surpassed our targeted spending reductions of US$5 million of annualised savings whilst identifying operational changes which will continue to create further value for Shanta and its shareholders. This approach is in line with our previously announced strategy of aligning the senior management team with that of Shanta’s owners and optimising the financial performance of our operations,” Zurrin concluded.

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African mining news