Aphrodite Gold to build new ore processing plant near Kalgoorlie

THE BOURSE WHISPERER: Aphrodite Gold (ASX: AQQ) is planning to build, commission and operate the first new ore processing plant in the Kalgoorlie region for the past 20 years.

The company intends to build a new oxide and refractory gold processing plant on the site of its Aphrodite gold project, located near Kalgoorlie in Western Australia.

The plant is initially being designed to process up to 1 million tonnes of ore per annum, with the ability to add capacity to 1.5 million tonnes.

The Aphrodite gold deposit will be the cornerstone for initial production anticipated to commence from late 2015 with an initial rate of around 30,000 ounces of gold per annum.

Aphrodite Gold said it has already kicked off negotiations with a number of more advanced regional gold companies for off take agreements or to sell their ore to the company.

The company said this would substantially increase throughput to improve project economics and to extend the Life of project for the long term.

Aphrodite’s directors are of the view a new refractory ore processing plant is needed in the region with the nearest existing plant being about 20 years old and 60km from the Aphrodite gold project.

Earlier this week the company announced a 35 per cent increase in its own JORC resource to 1.4 million ounces of gold.

Aphrodite is confident the resource estimate could expand further with additional exploration including drilling of lodes along strike and at depth as well as other targets within the project tenements.

“The history of the Eastern Goldfields bodes well for building a much needed new refractory ore processing plant,” Aphrodite Gold chairman Peter Buttigieg said in the company’s announcement to the Australian Securities Exchange.

“Such development will lift the prospects of regional miners and explorers and would be a bonus for the City of Kalgoorlie.

“The company’s plan is underpinned by a multiple financing strategy.

“In addition to its channel to large China-based investors, the company will complement this with existing funding partners and advanced gold hedging strategies being developed by its financial advisors.”