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Sibanye drops 2018 gold production guidance 6% for South African operations

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Sibanye drops 2018 gold production guidance 6% for South African operations

Sibanye Gold Ltd. revised down the 2018 gold production guidance for its South African operations due to disruptions caused by safety-related incidents at Kloof and Driefontein, a power outage at Beatrix earlier in the year and infrastructure damage at the Masakhane mine following a May 3 seismic event.

The company has reported 21 fatalities in various accidents at its South African operations since February.

Sibanye now expects its South African operations to produce between 1.17 million and 1.21 million ounces of gold, down 6% from its earlier forecast of between 1.24 Moz and 1.29 Moz.

All-in sustaining costs were revised to between US$1,227/oz and US$1,263/oz, with CapEx expected to come in around US$230 million.

Following an assessment of damages caused by the seismic event on the western side of the Masakhane mine, the company said July 2 that it decided to rehabilitate the footwall infrastructure to enable access.

Production from the western side of Masakhane is scheduled to start in February 2019, building up to normal production volumes of approximately 5,466 ounces per month by April 2019.

Operations resumed June 11 on the eastern side of the Masakhane mine, which produces about 2,570 ounces of gold per month, as access to the area was unaffected by the seismic activity.

Sibanye said resuming full production of approximately 8,038 ounces per month from Masakhane in April 2019 is expected to increased annual gold production at the South African operations.

The company expects platinum group metals production in South Africa to hit the top end of its guidance range of between 1.1 Moz and 1.15 Moz, with all-in sustaining costs expected to be at the bottom end of the guidance of between US$825/oz and US$860/oz. Related CapEx is forecast at about US$92 million.

Sibanye maintained the production outlook for its PGM operations in the U.S. at between 580,000 and 610,000 ounces, with all-in sustaining costs of US$640/oz to US$680/oz and CapEx of US$222 million.