Gold ore is being stockpiled at Havilah Resources’ Portia open pit gold mine in preparation for processing in April.

By Samantha James

HAVILAH Resources has started stockpiling gold ore at its Portia open pit in South Australia, three and a half months earlier than scheduled.

The milestone was achieved in mid-March due to a mine plan redesign which now envisioned commissioning of the processing plant by the end of April.Mining operations began in late March 2015 and by mid-March 2016 Havilah’s contractor had mined to within 5m of the high grade ore horizon.
Havilah managing director Dr Chris Giles said that mining the open pit had come with some challenges.

“It is pleasing to note that in spite of the numerous challenges presented by the soft clay overburden and ongoing dewatering requirements, mining of the Portia open pit has largely gone according to plan and the ore zone is as expected, which augers well for the remainder of the mining operation,” he said.

“Our next major milestone will be commencement of processing of the stockpiled ore, which we expect to achieve during April once construction and commissioning of the processing plant is completed.”

Havilah estimated a $40 million gross cash flow share from Portia in the second half of 2016 with the processing of 350,000t of gold ore. The company expected future growth from two nearby projects, North Portia and Kalkaroo, which presented a possible upside of up to 15 years.
The Kalkaroo copper-gold project has a proven sizeable long life resource of 622,000t of copper and 2 million ounces of gold. Havilah was aiming to mine the deposit in 2017.

The North Portia deposit is adjacent to Portia on the same mining lease, containing 235,000oz of gold and 100,000t of copper resources.
Havilah had fast tracked a feasibility study at North Portia to firm up additional resources while early stage permitting and planning continued at both projects.The company was working towards realising an annual production of at least 30,000t of copper and 100,000oz of gold across the next six years.