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Tietto smashes monthly gold production record in West Africa

Updated: May 2


Tietto Minerals has set a new monthly gold production record at its Abujar gold mine. Credit: File

Tietto Minerals has smashed the monthly production record at its Abujar gold mine at Côte d’Ivoire in West Africa by more than 1750 ounces, delivering 13,871 glittering gold ounces during December.


The latest figures revealed by the company today also show a new record monthly head grade of 1.16 grams per tonne gold at 95.2 per cent recovery and a record high of more than 600 tonnes milled per hour for 374,000 tonnes.


The increased production was recorded from just 26 days of operation in December following a scheduled five-day shutdown for an annual mill reline. Management says ore mined rose to a record level of 508,000 tonnes following an average of 349,000 tonnes in each of the previous six months from June through to November.


Three additional excavators brought into service by the company’s mining contractor in November allowed higher grade ore to be presented to the mill, while lower grade ore was stockpiled. Its previous monthly production record came in October last year after delivering 12,057 gold ounces with a milling output of 4.7 million tonnes per annum.

Since the management transition earlier in 2023, we have been focussed on increasing both tonnes mined and tonnes milled, and forcing cost savings across our operations as we lift the Company towards full production, which we expect will occur in H1 2024. It is also very pleasing to see that we finished Q4 2023 with a material uplift across all key mining, milling and production metrics compared to Q3 2023, which is further evidence of the continued operational improvement as we ramp up Abujar to full production. Tietto Minerals managing director and chief executive officer Matt Wilcox

In November last year, the company revealed a new nine-year life-of-mine plan for its Abujar gold mine after updating its mineral reserves. It outlined new plans for the mine to operate from next year to 2032 and management has estimated the average yearly production at a serious 170,000 ounces of gold.


The plans show a production head grade of 1.04g/t gold, assuming an increased plant throughput of 5.5 million tonnes per annum by 2025, for total production of 1.53 million ounces. Tax and cashflow sums are all based on a price of US$1900 (AU$2990) per ounce of gold, but Tietto is confident Abujar will be operating with nearly the lowest life-of-mine processing costs within the West African gold mining industry of just US$7.13 (AU$11.22) per tonne.


The company also predicted a strip ratio of 5.74 and measured and indicated resources that comprise 75 per cent of life-of-mine production, with inferred resources making up the remaining 25 per cent. The total proved and probable ore reserves are now estimated at a respectable 36.7 million tonnes at 1.15g/t gold for 1.36 million ounces, which is a sizeable increase on the previous numbers published in a 2021 definitive feasibility study (DFS).


Abujar sits about 30km from the major regional city of Daloa in central western Côte D’Ivoire and is comprised of three contiguous exploration areas for a total land area of 1114 square kilometres, with less than 10 per cent explored. In December 2020, a gold exploitation (mining) licence within the Abujar Middle exploration tenement – which covers an area of 120.36sq km – was granted.


Last year, Tietto received an unsolicited takeover offer bid from its second-biggest shareholder in Zhaojin Mining for 100 per cent of the company’s issued shares. The offer was tabled at a price of 58 cents per share.


However, in light of the record December production levels, the company’s board has advised shareholders to reject the offer, saying it materially undervalues the organisation and was opportunistically timed ahead of its share price being able to reflect operational performance.


Tietto’s stock was valued at a high of 61.5 cents during intraday trading this morning and it seems its promise of improving gold grades early last year are starting to materialise.


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