PT AGINCOURT Resources has set aside US$12 million for exploration activities around the operating Martabe Gold-Silver Project in North Sumatra. The exploration is being carried out in a bid to maintain long-term production.

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The processing facilities at PT Agincourt Resources’ Martabe Gold-Silver Project in North Sumatra.

The Martabe Contract of Work consists of 1639sqkm of the highly prospective Sumatra belt. There is 130km of strike length along the belt covering multiple project areas. A number of targets remain to be drill tested, including a mix of gold-silver and porphyry copper-gold targets.

There are six known deposits within a 5km by 6km area with Purnama the largest so far. Others are Ramba Joring, Tor Uluala, Uluala Hulu, Barani and Horas.

Exploration earlier this year 3-4km south of Martabe identified a new cluster of deposits, including a new 1km-long undrilled target at Horas South. The company plans to undertake drilling at this prospect while oxide pods at Horas West will also be drilled with other areas identified for surface follow-up.

The company will also continue to convert resources into reserves. To date in mine exploration and infill drilling has expanded the reserve tonnes and increased average grade, and Agincourt is confident this will continue.

Agincourt president director Tim Duffy said that while most other mining companies were cutting down exploration costs due to the mining downturn, the company would maintain exploration in the hope that commodity prices would turn around.

With the current exploration in addition to proposed capital expenditure of US$67 million, the company expects to maintain its annual production target for 2016 of 260,000 ounces of gold and 2.2 million ounces of silver.

In 2015 there were 302,449 ounces of gold and 2.53 million ounces of silver produced at Martabe, higher than 2014 production of 275,515 ounces of gold and 2.23 million ounces of silver, and 2013 with 281,477 ounces of gold and 1.51 million ounces of silver.

By the end of 2015, Agincourt’s gold reserves stood at 2.8 million ounces and resources at 8 million ounces while the silver reserve stood at 27 million ounces and resources at 69 million ounces.

Agincourt also hopes that a Martabe Improvement Program will result in improved efficiency and productivity. The program involves cost and capacity optimisation. Planned initial initiatives are optimising the grinding circuit, debottlenecking the process plant, reducing energy costs and optimising the mine fleet, including use of larger trucks and excavators.

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