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Highland Gold's Q4'19 production shoots up 27% YOY

Highland Gold Mining Ltd.'s production of gold and equivalents shot up 27% year over year to 83,429 ounces in the fourth quarter of 2019, bringing its total output over the full year to 300,704 ounces.

Total 2019 production was 12% higher than in 2018 and slightly above the company's guidance range of 290,000 to 300,000 ounces of gold and equivalents, which it left unchanged for 2020, according to a Jan. 21 release. Gold equivalent production includes silver, lead and zinc.

Highland Gold's average realized gold price reached US$1,482 per ounce in the final quarter of 2019 and US$1,395/oz for the full year, both increasing year over year from US$1,230/oz and US$1,255/oz, respectively.

Capital expenditure totaled US$94 million in 2019 and is expected to more than double to between US$205 million and US$210 million as the company invests in expanding output.

Construction is progressing at its key growth project, Kekura in Russia's Far Eastern Chukotka Autonomous Okrug, the company said. It expects to complete the site's main processing plant by 2023, according to an October 2019 presentation.

Highland Gold also said Jan. 21 that COO Anton Kim is stepping down, with his position to be temporarily filled by Sergey Baikalov, managing director of the company's operations in the Far East region.