Centerra Gold exceeded its 2015 annual production guidance with consolidated gold production for 2015 totalling 536,921 ounces. This includes 520,695 ounces from Kumtor mine in the Kyrgyz Republic and 16,226 ounces from the Boroo mine in Mongolia.
During the fourth quarter of 2015, consolidated gold production was 133,665 ounces, including 130,611 ounces from Kumtor and 3054 ounces from Boroo.
Centerra’s CEO Scott Perry said, “I’m very pleased to report that both our operations exceeded their production guidance for the year and that we ended the year with more than US$535 million in cash and short-term investments.
“For 2016 we are estimating gold production to be in the range of 480,000 to 530,000 ounces. At Kumtor we are expecting production to be weighted more towards the second half of the year as we access the higher grade portion of the SB Zone at the end of the second quarter.
“Centerra’s projected consolidated all-in sustaining cost per ounce sold for 2016 is expected to be in the range of US$877 to $968.”
He said Centerra was continuing to advance the Öksüt Project in Turkey. “Work on the detailed engineering and procurement of contractors and equipment is ongoing. Our site project management team is in place and will be moving to our offices in Develi, which is approximately 20 minutes from the site, on February 1.”
All of Centerra’s 2016 production is expected to come from the Kumtor mine and is consistent with the 2016 production outlined in the life-of-mine plan set out in the Kumtor NI 43-101 technical report dated March 20, 2015.
The Boroo mine will continue with closure activities mainly focusing on reclamation work at the Boroo property. Any revenue from Boroo production from rinsing the heap leach pad will be offset against mine closure costs. The 2016 production forecast assumes no gold production from Boroo or Gatsuurt.
Planned exploration expenditures for 2016 total $11 million, which is approximately equal to the 2015 exploration spending. The 2016 exploration plan includes $1 million for further exploration work on the Öksüt property, and $10 million to fund other ongoing projects, excluding Greenstone, and generative exploration programs.
Centerra’s projected capital expenditures for 2016, excluding capitalized stripping, are estimated to be $269 million, including $85 million of sustaining capital and $184 million of growth capital.
At Kumtor, 2016 total capital expenditures, excluding capitalized stripping, are forecast to be $110 million. Spending on sustaining capital of $84 million relates primarily to major overhauls and replacements of the heavy duty mine equipment ($69 million), construction to raise the tailings dam ($6 million) and other items ($9 million).
Growth capital investment at Kumtor for 2016 is forecast at $26 million and includes the relocation of certain infrastructure at Kumtor related to the KS-13 life-of-mine expansion plan amounting to $17 million, dewatering projects ($6 million) and other items ($3 million).
The cash component of capitalized stripping costs related to the development of the open pit is expected to be $122 million of the $162 million total capitalized stripping in 2016.