DRDGOLD Ltd (NYSE:DRD) cited progress with its Far West Rand Gold Recoveries operation, with work to upgrade the Driefontein 4 tailings storage facility completed.
The Johannesburg-based miner recently acquired gold and platinum miner Sibanye-Stillwater’s West Rand Tailings Retreatment Project (WRTRP).
DEEP DIVE: DRDGOLD glitters with vast reserves in its flagship Ergo and Sibanye-Stillwater West Rand Project
With the WRTP acquisition under its belt, DRDGOLD is building a large plant to process a million tons a month, and a tailings storage facility which could act as a catalyst to consolidating more dumps west of Johannesburg.
“DRDGOLD is on track to achieve planned throughput of 500,000 tpm from Phase 1 of its Far West Gold Recoveries operation in the first half of calendar 2019,” the company told investors.
ABOVE: Far West Rand gold operations in S. Africa
DRDGOLD said the upgraded tailings storage facility will receive tailings from the Driefontein 3 plant, which has been refurbished to re-treat material reclaimed from the Driefontein 5 dump.
“Development of Phase 1 began in August last year and first commissioning began just four months later, in December,” said the South African miner.
The West Rand assets currently include a range of gold-bearing dumps near Carletonville west of Johannesburg, as well as three processing plants.
According to analysts, the acquisition transforms DRDGOLD in one stroke, giving it a platform from which to grow aggressively into Africa and other commodities. It also cuts overhead unit costs through increased production and puts an end to DRDGOLD’S single asset operating risk. The West Rand crown jewel virtually doubles the miner’s gold reserves.
Contact Uttara Choudhury at [email protected]