Sierra RutileLtd. posted an increase in second-quarter production across allcommodities and now expects full-year rutile production to be at the upper endof its guidance of120,000 tonnes to 135,000 tonnes.
In the second quarter, the Sierra Leone-focused minerproduced 34,629 tonnes of rutile, 5,025 tonnes of ilmenite and 394 tonnes ofzircon, representing 16%, 22% and 18% year-over-year increases, respectively.
Half-year production improved 15% for rutile to 61,408tonnes, and 6% for zircon to 691 tonnes, according to the July 15 statement.Production of ilmenite, however, fell 51% to 8,325 tonnes in the half as miningoperations focused on the production of rutile over ilmenite.
The improvements to plant utilization and availabilityundertaken during 2015 and early 2016 have resulted in the Lanti Dredge mineand Lanti Dry mine producing higher volumes of heavy mineral concentrate in thefirst half, compared to a year ago.
Moreover, the recently commissioned Gangama Dry mineachieved a plant utilization rate of 86% in June, against a budget of 47%.