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Russian gold producer Polyus hits record Q3 output, holds 2019 target

London — Russia's largest gold producer Polyus reached a historical quarterly high gold output in Q3, remaining well on track toward its full-year production target of 2.8 million oz, it said Tuesday.

The company's third-quarter gold output of 753,000 oz (21.3 mt) was up 9% year on year and 10% higher on the quarter on seasonally higher production from Alluvials and higher refined volumes at Kuranakh.

In Q3, Polyus mined 17.5 million mt of ore, 12% higher quarter on quarter and up 38% year on year thanks to intensified mining at Blagodatnoye -- the company's second-largest open pit -- in Krasnoyarsk region and at Natalka in the Magadan region. The latter was ramped up to capacity in H2 2018.

Polyus processed 11.4 million mt of ore in Q3 as a result, up 4% from Q2 and 9% on the year. Recovery rate remained largely stable at 82.1%.

Polyus sold $1.06 billion worth of gold in Q3, with revenues rising 20% on the quarter. Q3 average gold selling price rose 13% from Q2 to $1,482/oz.

Polyus produced 2 million oz (57.5mt) of gold in January-September, 13% higher year on year. The output of dore bar gold -- a semi-pure alloy of gold in form of bars -- totaled 2.1 million oz, up 14% year on year. The company processed 13% more ore -- 32.6 million mt -- achieving recovery rate of 81.9%.

Polyus sold $2.7 billion worth of gold in January-September, with revenues climbing 27% year on year supported by larger volumes as well as higher gold prices. The weighted average selling price of $1,372/oz was $94/oz higher on the year.

The company's principal operations are in Russia's prolific gold mining provinces in Eastern Siberia and the Far East.

Russian gold output totaled 142.2mt in the first half of the year, up 11% year on year, with 126.7 mt derived from mineral resources and 15.5 mt from recycling, according to the Russian union of gold producers.

-- Ekaterina Bouckley, katya.bouckley@spglobal.com

-- Edited by James Burgess, newsdesk@spglobal.com