Q1 2021 Production and ESG Report
London, United Kingdom, 25 May 2021 — Nord Gold plc (“Nordgold” or the “Group”), the internationally diversified gold producer, announces operating results for the first quarter ended 31 March 2021 and provides an update on ESG performance.
Q1 2021 Highlights:
- Continued focus on safety: LTIFR of 0.09 at Nordgold mines in Q1 2021. This represents a substantial improvement of 40% year-on-year (YoY). With sadness, in spite of the improvement in LTIFR, Nordgold regrets to confirm an accident at the Irokinda underground mine in January 2021 which resulted in the death of one of our employees.
- Consistently strong production performance in Q1 2021: refined gold production increased by 7% YoY to 241.1 thousand ounces of gold equivalent (koz). This was mainly driven by higher production at the Bissa-Bouly, Lefa and Taborny mines compared with the prior period, which was partially offset by planned production decreases at other Nordgold mines.
- Gold prices remained strong during the quarter, buoyed by the flow-on effects of widespread fiscal stimulus and uncertain outlook due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Gross region expansion: Nordgold continues to expand its operations in the Gross region: Phase 1 of the two-year Gross mine expansion project is on track to increase mining and processing capacity to approximately 18 million tonnes of ore per year from Q3 2021 (up from 14.5 million tonnes of ore processed in 2019). The feasibility study for Phase 2 expansion (to 26 million tonnes by 2023) is on track to be completed in 2021.
- Financial strength: in April 2021, Nordgold repaid in full the US$ 325 million seven-year debt facility provided to the Group by Sberbank in April 2017. Earlier in 2021, Nordgold also repaid the full outstanding amount of US$ 200 million related to a five-year syndicated loan. As of 25 May 2021, Nordgold’s total debt consisted solely of a US$ 400 million 5-year Eurobond maturing in 2024. In March 2021, Nordgold entered into a two-year US$ 100 million ESG-linked revolving credit facility with a group of international banks, which has not been drawn down as of 25 May 2021. Nordgold’s financial position remains strong with one of the lowest net leverage ratio in the industry.
Message from the CEO
I am pleased to report a strong operational result in the first quarter, highlighting once again the combination of strengths that support Nordgold’s performance. These are driven by a committed workforce, geographically diversified portfolio of high class, well invested assets, complemented by a low cost, low risk development pipeline enhanced by our leading position in the highly prospective Gross region in Russia, all backed by a strong balance sheet. Our Gross expansion project is moving forward quickly with Phase 1 on track for completion by the third quarter and preparation for Phase 2 well underway. The feasibility study for the new Tokko project, also in the Gross region and set to be our next major mine construction, is also on track.
I am also pleased, as we begin the year, to provide a fuller update on our ESG performance. In particular, in March we announced our commitment to achieve net zero CO2 emissions by 2050 in support of the Paris Agreement, as well as a commitment to providing a full road map to net zero including interim targets at the full year results. We look forward to the rest of the year with confidence. Nikolai ZelenskiNordgold CEO
Head of Corporate Communications
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7250 1446
Nordgold is an internationally diversified one million ounce gold producer with about 7,800 people operating a portfolio of nine mines (in Burkina Faso, Guinea, Russia and Kazakhstan) and a number of development and exploration projects in West Africa, Eurasia and the Americas. Since its foundation in 2007, Nordgold has established a global reputation as a leading developer of tier one gold mining assets with a proven commitment to community engagement, sustainability, efficiency and operating in an environmentally responsible manner.