Mining at the Gruyere project, a joint venture between Gold Road (ASX: GOR) and Gold Fields (JSE, NYSE: GFI) in Western Australia, could begin as early as next month with first gold production expected to come in the second half of next year, the companies said Monday.
Overall project engineering at the 270,000 ounce-a-year project, which is already more than A$100 million over its original budget of A$507 million, is now 96 percent complete, while construction is 71 percent ready, the partners said.
Once at full-tilt the Gruyere is expected to produce 270,000 ounces of gold a year.
The first stage run-of-mine pad civil works have also been completed, with assembly started on the primary crusher.
Gold Road said favourable weather conditions had allowed contractors to keep up the pace, with up to 630 workers now on site.
“Our own workforce, together with our contractor-partners, are motivated to achieve the first gold production target next year, while maintaining continued focus on safety and quality,” Gold Fields executive VP for Australia Stuart Mathews, said in the statement.
Gruyere is expected to produce between 170,000 and 230,000 ounces of gold next year. Once at full tilt, the mine’s annual output is estimated to be 270,000 ounces.
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