ZIMBABWEAN gold mining firm, Caledonia Mining Corp., reported gold production for the six months of its 2019 financial year of 24,660 ounces following second quarter output of 12,712 oz – 6.4% higher than in the first quarter.
Caledonia maintains its 2019 full year production guidance of 53,000 to 56,000 oz and remains on track with progress towards its target of 80,000 oz by 2022, the company said in a production report today.
“Production in the second quarter … was … still at a level at which we remain comfortable with our 2019 production guidance of 53,000 to 56,000 ounces for the full year,” said Steve Curtis, CEO of Caledonia Mining in a statement.
“We expect to complete the shaft sinking phase of the central shaft project later this month, which will be a significant milestone for our business,” he added. Production from the central shaft will begin in the second half of Caledonia’s 2020 financial year as part of its plans to produce 75,000 oz in 2021 and 80,000 oz by 2022.
This is notwithstanding difficult economic conditions in Zimbabwe which is currently running critical short of electricity supply whilst inflation has spiralled out of control. Despite this, the company said now is the time to expand.
“If you believe things will be better in five years’ time, you have to get in now,” said Mark Learmonth, Caledonia’s CFO in an interview with Reuters in March.
“We’re not talking about a big, producing mine,” he said. “We’re talking about advanced exploration or brownfield, but with good prospectivity. We plan to redeploy some of the surplus cash to be generated by the Blanket Mine,” he said.
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