Graphic Business News

Revived Obuasi Mine to ramp up production

By: Graphic Business
Mr Srinivasan-Venkatakrishnan, CEO, Anglogold Ashanti
Mr Srinivasan-Venkatakrishnan, CEO, Anglogold Ashanti

Gold production from the Obuasi Mine of Anglogold Ashanti is expected to average 350,000 to 450,000 ounces a year in its first 10 years of operations.

This follows decision by the company to revive the mine which is expected to start gold production  in the third quarter of 2019.

The new mechanised operation is also expected to create between 2,000 to 2,500 jobs.

The Managing Director and General Manager, AngloGold Ashanti Obuasi Mine, Mr Eric Asubonteng at a news conference in Accra said "It envisages a smaller but skilled workforce that can operate in a mechanised operation with a strong sense of accountability."

The Obuasi Mine has embarked on a fundamental restructuring programme since 2014. Underground production was suspended at the end of 2014 and the entire workforce was retrenched.The mine’s life span is 21 years.

Reviving the mine
The AngloGold Ashanti will spend up to $500 million in initial capital expenditure to revive and mechanise its Obuasi Mine.

This follows the signing of a regulatory and fiscal agreements with government providing the framework for the development of the mine.

"The Government of Ghana and AngloGold Ashanti have put in place several agreements, including a development agreement, tax concession agreement, security agreement and a reclamation security agreement," he said.

The tax concession agreement and the development agreement must now be ratified by Ghana's Parliament.

Mr Asubonteng said the redevelopment would establish Obuasi as a mechanised underground mining operation - a fundamental departure from operations in the past.

He said the redevelopment would make use of automation and controls for improved operational efficiencies and consistency in performance.

Mr Asubonteng said the project implementation would be undertaken in two phases with phase one comprising project establishment, mine rehabilitation and development, Plant and infrastructure refurbishment to enable production to reach 2,000 tonnes per day for the first operating year.

The second phase would involve refurbishment of the underground materials handling system, shafts, and ventilation and the construction of the primary crusher, carbon regeneration, a gold room and tailings storage facility. GNA/GB