Gross Mine Expansion
Capacity expansion to 26 mtpa
Nordgold’s near-term development plans are anchored by the highly prospective Gross Region in Russia’s Southern Yakutia, which has the potential to develop into a new world-class gold producing region given its substantial resource base, favourable geology, low mining costs and developed infrastructure.
The Gross Region includes two near-term development projects:
Gross Mine Expansion
Launched in 2018 with the nameplate capacity of 12 million tonnes of ore per year (mtpa), the Gross mine has developed quickly to become Nordgold’s largest mine, and one of the largest gold mining operations in Sakha Republic.
Production expansion at Gross is anticipated to add approximately 110 thousand ounces of gold by increasing ore mining and processing capacity in two phases:
Completed in September 2021 on time and ahead of budget. As a result, Gross mining and processing capacity increased to 18 mtpa, up from 16 mtpa in 2020.
The total capital expenditure on Phase 1 of Gross expansion was approximately US$50 million, 15% lower than initially planned, again highlighting Nordgold’s track record of completing major development projects in line with, or below budget. Capex savings were achieved due to innovative engineering decisions, construction materials costs optimisation and lower than planned mining fleet cost.
The Phase 1 expansion consisted of:
- the installation of additional processing equipment including a new 25-meter stacker, three adsorption columns, five new pumps and all associated infrastructure and services;
- an increase in the mining fleet with the addition of 10 new mine trucks, one excavator and two drilling rigs and a number of auxiliary vehicles, including buses, fuel trucks, mobile repair units, a crane truck and a front loader; and
- the expansion of auxiliary infrastructure, including new camp facilities and laboratory equipment.
Expected to increase mining and processing capacity of the Gross mine to 26 mtpa. The production expansion at Gross is anticipated to add approximately 110 thousand ounces of gold production annually once Phase 2 is completed, thereby increasing the Gross mine annual production to approximately 290 thousand ounces.
Vast exploration potential
Gross Region: A springboard for exploration with multi-million ounce resource potential
Nordgold has a solid track record of accretive exploration in the Gross Region with its mineable resources base exceeding 10 Moz as of 31 December 2020. Nordgold discovered 3.6 Moz of Tokko project resources in just three years (2018-2020).
The Region has significant exploration potential, particularly to the west and south west of the Tokko project. Geophysical studies have indicated the potential for continued mineralisation and identified significant anomalies in these parts of the Region. These anomalies were confirmed by geochemical analysis in 2021 and active exploration programme of the Region, including initial drilling, continues.
In order to further expand its operations in the Gross Region, Nordgold is submitting applications for new exploration licenses granting the right to carry out a geological survey in the Region.