DRDGOLD Ltd (NYSE:DRD) (JSE:DRD) said Phase 1 of the development of Far West Gold Recoveres is underway and gold production from the project is expected to kick off by the first quarter of 2019.
CEO Niel Pretorius broke ground to mark the start of the project Monday; by Wednesday, the first 100 meters of the pipeline — from the Driefontein 5 dump to the Driefontein 2 plant — had been installed.
This comes within a week of DRDGOLD concluding its acquisition of Sibanye-Stillwater’s West Rand Tailings Retreatment Project, which will now be known going forward as Far West Gold Recoveries. The acquisition increases DRD's gold reserves by 90%.
BIG PICTURE: DRDGOLD glitters with vast reserves in its flagship Ergo and Sibanye-Stillwater West Rand Project
The development began by upgrading the Driefontein 2 plant to process tailings from the Driefontein 5 dump at a rate of between 400 000 and 600 000 tonnes per month (tpm) and depositing the residue on the Driefontein 4 tailings dam.
DRDGOLD is a South African gold producer and the world's leading producer of the precious metal from tailings, which are the byproducts left over from mining. Its technology allows recovery of up to 40% of the gold left in particle form.