Resources group Caledonia Mining Corporation Plc says first quarter gold production at its local unit — Blanket Gold Mine came in slightly lower than same period last year due to flooding.
The quarter under review is generally synonymous with rains which result in lower production due to flooding.
During the first quarter to March 31, 2021, Blanket Mine produced 13 197 ounces of gold and management remains upbeat of meeting its production guidance of between 61 000 — 67 000 ounces for the full year.
“Production in the first quarter of 2021 was slightly below our target and below the comparable quarter in 2020 albeit at a level which allows us to maintain our 2021 production guidance of 61 000 to 67 000 ounces for the full year.
“Gold production has often been lower in the first quarter of each year and increases in the following quarters. The rainy season this year saw unprecedented rainfall causing flooding at the mine and resulted in several lost shifts during the period.
“These temporary issues have now been rectified and with the central shaft now operational, we remain on track to hit our 80 000 ounces target in 2022,” said Caledonia chief executive officer Steve Curtis.
Earlier this month, the mining firm announced the central shaft at the Gwanda-based Blanket Mine operational.
The central shaft has been a culmination of a six-year project costing about US$67 million funded through internal cashflow initiatives.
For the 2020 financial year, the Blanket Gold Mine produced 57 899 ounces, a new record for annual production. Herald