Central Asia Metals PLC – Q3 2019 Operations Update

Central Asia Metals PLC – Q3 2019 Operations Update

Central Asia Metals plc (AIM: CAML) today provides a Q3 2019 operations update for the Kounrad dump leach, solvent extraction and electro-winning (‘SX-EW’) copper recovery plant in Kazakhstan (‘Kounrad’) and the Sasa zinc-lead mine in North Macedonia (‘Sasa’).

Highlights

–      Production on track to meet full year guidance for copper, zinc and lead

–      Q3 2019 Kounrad

§ Copper produced, 4,039 tonnes

–      Q3 2019 Sasa

§ Zinc in concentrate produced, 6,186 tonnes

§ Lead in concentrate produced, 7,362 tonnes

 

CAML production summary

Metal production (tonnes)

Q3 2019

9m 2019

9m 2018

Copper

4,039

10,633

10,686

Zinc

6,186

17,703

16,762

Lead

7,362

21,718

21,988

 

Nigel Robinson, Chief Executive Officer, commented:

“I am pleased that we have once again delivered on track production from Sasa and Kounrad, and to report that we have had no lost time injuries at either operation during Q3 2019.”

Kounrad

Kounrad Q3 2019 copper production of 4,039 tonnes brings output for the first nine months of 2019 to 10,633 tonnes. Total Kounrad copper production since operations commenced in 2012 is now 93,107 tonnes. 

Total copper recovered from the Western Dumps in 2019 so far is 7,219 tonnes, equating to approximately 68% of the amount plated.

During Q3 2019, preparations for the forthcoming winter operating period were substantially completed. Capital works focussed on the extension of collector trenches around Dump 22, and modifications to the diameter of pipelines transferring solutions from the Western Dumps to the solvent extraction facility.

Copper sales during Q3 2019 were 3,614 tonnes, bringing the total for the first nine months of the year to 10,075 tonnes.

Sasa

In Q3 2019, mined and processed ore totalled 207,016 tonnes and 210,237 tonnes respectively, bringing the total for the first nine months of 2019 to 607,267 tonnes of ore mined and 614,777 tonnes of ore processed. The average head grades for the quarter were 3.37% zinc and 3.71% lead, and for the first nine months of 2019 were on average 3.31% and 3.74% respectively. The average 2019 metallurgical recoveries to 30 September were 86.9% for zinc and 94.4% for lead.

Sasa produces a zinc concentrate and a separate lead concentrate. In Q3 2019, 12,385 tonnes of concentrate containing 50.0% zinc and 10,245 tonnes of concentrate containing 71.9% lead were produced. Total production for the first nine months of 2019 was 35,690 tonnes of zinc concentrate at an average grade of 49.6% and 29,965 tonnes of lead concentrate at an average grade of 72.5%.   

Sasa typically receives from smelters approximately 84% of the value of its zinc in concentrate and approximately 95% of the value of its lead in concentrate. Accordingly, Q3 2019 payable production of zinc was 5,195 tonnes and of lead was 6,993 tonnes, bringing total 2019 payable production to 30 September to 14,847 tonnes of zinc and 20,632 tonnes of lead. Given that deliveries from Sasa to the smelters occur on a regular basis, payable base metal in concentrate sales for the nine-month period were similar at 14,831 tonnes of zinc and 20,649 tonnes of lead.

During the first nine months of 2019, Sasa sold 254,617 ounces of payable silver to Osisko Gold Royalties, in accordance with its streaming agreement. 

During Q3 2019, the construction and lining of Tailings Storage Facility 4 (‘TSF4’) were completed.

Units

 Q3 2019

9m 2019

9m 2018

Ore mined

t

207,016

607,267

597,338

Plant feed

t

210,237

614,777

599,619

Zinc grade

%

3.37

3.31

3.31

Zinc recovery

%

87.3

86.9

84.5

Lead grade

%

3.71

3.74

3.91

Lead recovery

%

94.4

94.4

93.7

Zinc concentrate

t (dry)

12,385

35,690

34,282

–      Grade

%

50.0

49.6

48.9

–      Contained zinc

t

6,186

17,703

16,762

Lead concentrate

t (dry)

10,245

29,965

30,167

–      Grade

%

71.9

72.5

72.9

–      Contained lead

t

7,362

21,718

21,988

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