Endeavour Mining Corp. expects the first gold pour at its Ity carbon-in-leach project in Côte d'Ivoire to occur in the second quarter of 2019, about two months ahead of schedule as compared to the previously targeted mid-2019.
The overall project is more than 75% complete and construction of the process plant is more than 70% complete, the company said Oct. 17, with mill installation underway three months earlier than planned. Construction started in September 2017.
Endeavour Mining noted that the project remains on budget with nearly all of the US$412 million in initial CapEx committed and approximately 65% spent. More than 2,800 personnel including contractors are currently on site.
"Completing the construction sooner is expected to result in material improvement to our 2019 free cash flow generation potential as Ity [carbon-in-leach] will be a low-cost operation with all-in sustaining costs expected to be below US$500/oz over its first five years," said President and CEO Sébastien de Montessus.
As of September 2017, heap leach operations at Ity were expected to end upon commissioning of the [carbon-in-leach] plant, with the company planning to reassess running both operations in parallel.