B2Gold Corp. (TSX: BTO) (NYSE AMERICAN: BTG) (NSX: B2G) is pleased to announce its gold production and gold revenue for the third quarter of 2022. All dollar figures are in United States dollars unless otherwise indicated.
2022 Third Quarter Highlights
Third Quarter 2022 Gold Production and Full Year 2022 Outlook
Mine-by-mine gold production in the third quarter and first nine months of 2022 (including the Company’s approximately 25% attributable share of Calibre’s production) was as follows:
|Mine||Q3 2022||YTD 2022||FY 2022 Revised
|Fekola||oz||129,933||354,647||570,000 – 600,000|
|Masbate||oz||49,902||164,041||215,000 – 225,000|
|Otjikoto||oz||35,068||101,546||165,000 – 175,000|
|B2Gold Consolidated (1)||oz||214,903||620,234||950,000 – 1,000,000|
|Equity interest in Calibre (2)||oz||12,113||39,770||40,000 – 50,000|
|Total||oz||227,016||660,004||990,000 – 1,050,000|
|(1)||“B2Gold Consolidated” gold production is presented on a 100% basis, as B2Gold fully consolidates the results of its Fekola, Masbate and Otjikoto mines in its consolidated financial statements (even though it does not own 100% of these operations).|
|(2)||“Equity interest in Calibre” represents the Company’s approximate 25% indirect share of Calibre’s operations. B2Gold applies the equity method of accounting for its 25% ownership interest in Calibre.|
Fekola Gold Mine – Mali
|Total ore processed||Mt||2.29|
|Gold mill feed grade||g/t||1.90|
|Gold recovery||%||93.1 %|
The Fekola Mine in Mali produced 129,933 ounces in the third quarter of 2022, lower than planned due to a challenging rainy season in West Mali which delayed access to higher grade ore from Fekola Phase 6. The Fekola processing facilities continued to outperform budget with 2.29 million tonnes processed during the third quarter, due to favorable ore fragmentation and hardness as well as continued optimization of the grinding circuit. Mill feed grade was impacted in the third quarter of 2022 due to the processing of low grade ore stockpiles as a replacement for delayed volumes of higher grade ore from Fekola Phase 6. Mined ore tonnage and grade continue to reconcile well with the Fekola resource model.
In early October 2022, ore was mined from the higher grade Fekola Phase 6 as the region exits its rainy season (which typically runs from June to September). Ore from Fekola Phase 6 is anticipated to average between 3.4 to 3.5 g/t gold, with fourth quarter of 2022 production expected to bring full year 2022 gold production to within guidance of between 570,000 to 600,000 ounces.
Masbate Gold Mine – The Philippines
|Total ore processed||Mt||1.89|
|Gold mill feed grade||g/t||1.10|
|Gold recovery||%||74.7 %|
The Masbate Mine in the Philippines remains on target to achieve its previously revised 2022 guidance and produced 49,902 ounces in the third quarter of 2022. The ratio of sulphide and transitional ore to oxide ore was higher than budgeted in the third quarter, which contributed to the lower-than-planned throughput and recovery and higher-than-planned gold mill feed grade.
The Masbate Mine is expected to produce towards the lower end of guidance of between 215,000 and 225,000 ounces of gold in 2022.
Otjikoto Gold Mine – Namibia
|Total ore processed||Mt||0.88|
|Gold mill feed grade||g/t||1.27|
|Gold recovery||%||98.0 %|
The Otjikoto Mine in Namibia produced 35,068 ounces in the third quarter of 2022, lower than planned mainly due to delays in bringing the Wolfshag Underground mine into production. Project delays were due to issues achieving development rates in prior periods, which have been addressed through appointing a new development contractor in April 2022. Development rates in the Wolfshag Underground mine have recovered, with access to initial development ore achieved in the third quarter of 2022 and stope ore production expected to commence in the fourth quarter of 2022. Mined ore tonnage and grade continue to reconcile well with Otjikoto’s resource model, with production forecast to significantly increase in the fourth quarter of 2022 when mining reaches a higher grade zone in the Otjikoto pit and with stope ore production commencing from the Wolfshag Underground mine. The initial underground Mineral Reserve estimate for the down-plunge extension of the Wolfshag deposit includes 210,000 ounces of gold in 1.2 million tonnes of ore at 5.57 g/t gold. Ongoing delineation drilling for the initial stope indicates very good reconciliation with the resource model and stope location.
The Otjikoto Mine is expected to produce towards the lower end of guidance of between 165,000 and 175,000 ounces of gold in 2022.
Fekola Complex – Pathway to Increased Annual Gold Production
Based on the updated Anaconda Area Mineral Resource estimate and B2Gold’s preliminary planning, the Company has demonstrated that the Anaconda Area (Bantako and Menankoto license areas) could provide selective higher grade saprolite material (average grade of 2.2 g/t gold) to be trucked to and fed into the Fekola mill at a rate of up to 1.5 million tonnes per annum. Trucking of selective higher grade saprolite material to the Fekola mill will increase the ore processed and annual gold production from the Fekola mill, with the potential to add an average of approximately 80,000 to 100,000 ounces of gold per year to the Fekola mill’s annual production.
In 2022, the Company budgeted $33 million for development of saprolite mining at the Anaconda Area including road construction, mine infrastructure, and mining equipment. The construction mobile equipment fleet is arriving, and the Company expects to break ground on roads and mining infrastructure construction in the fourth quarter of 2022. Engineering and procurement of the mine workshop and mobile equipment is on schedule for saprolite production from the Bantako license area as early as the second quarter of 2023 and from the Dandoko license area as early as the fourth quarter of 2023. Production from Bantako and Dandoko is contingent upon receipt of all necessary permits as well as optimizing long-term project value from the various oxide and sulphide material sources now available including Fekola Pit, Fekola Underground, Cardinal, Bantako, Menankoto, Dandoko, and Bakolobi.
Preliminary results of a Fekola Complex optimization study, coupled with 2022 exploration drilling results, indicate that there is a significant opportunity to increase gold production and resource utilization with the addition of oxide processing capacity. The Company has therefore commenced a feasibility level engineering study of stand-alone oxide processing facilities at the Anaconda Area. The study will be based on processing at least 4 Mtpa of saprolite and transitional (oxide) resources, with an option to add fresh rock (sulphide) capabilities in the future. Results of this study are expected in the second quarter of 2023. Conceptual analysis indicates that the combined Fekola and Anaconda processing facilities could have the potential to produce more than 800,000 ounces of gold per year commencing as early as 2026, subject to completion of final feasibility studies, and the receipt of all necessary regulatory approvals and permits. Further expansion of the Mamba and Cobra sulphide zones (see September 15, 2022 press release) could sustain a production profile averaging over 800,000 ounces of gold per year over a 10-year period. Drilling is currently ongoing at the Mamba and Cobra sulphide zones.
For the third quarter of 2022, consolidated gold revenue was $393 million on sales of 229,400 ounces at an average realized gold price of $1,711 per ounce.
Bill Lytle, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, a qualified person under NI 43-101, has approved the scientific and technical information related to operations matters contained in this news release.
Brian Scott, P. Geo., Vice President, Geology & Technical Services, a qualified person under NI 43-101, has approved the scientific and technical information related to exploration and mineral resource matters contained in this news release.
Giga Metals Corp. (TSX-V: GIGA) announced the results of a Pre-Fe... READ MORE
Red Pine Exploration Inc. (TSX-V: RPX) (OTCQB: RDEXF) is pleased ... READ MORE
Brixton Metals Corporation (TSX-V: BBB) (OTCQB: BBBXF) is pleased... READ MORE
i-80 GOLD CORP. (TSX: IAU) (NYSE: IAUX) is pleased to announce th... READ MORE
FE Battery Metals Corp. (CSE: FE) (OTCQB: FEMFF) (WKN: A2JC89) is... READ MORE