Endeavour Mining Corporation (TSE:EDV) (OTCQX:EDVMF) has revealed it is kicking off mining at the Kari Pump deposit of its Houndé mine in Burkina Faso.
The West Africa-focused company has received a mining permit extension from the Burkina Faso government to cover the full Kari area, which hosts the Kari Pump, Kari West and Kari Center discoveries.
Mining has now started at the high-grade Kari Pump section, where over 60,000 metres of grade control drilling took place in anticipation of permitting earlier this year.
Endeavour told shareholders that the Kari Area has been permitted as an extension of the main Houndé mining permit, which allows the area to benefit from Burkina Faso’s 2003 Mining Code that includes a corporate income tax rate of 17.5%, a 10% free-carried State interest, and a royalty based on a 3% to 5% sliding scale linked to prevailing gold prices.
The company plans to increase the average feed grade in the second half of 2020 and position the mine to meet the upper end of its 230,000- to 250,000-ounce production guidance range, it told shareholders.
In a statement, Endeavour CEO Sébastien de Montessus said the company was “pleased” to receive consent to start mining in the Kari Area and grateful to the Burkina Faso Government for its “extraordinary efforts” to finalize the permit in the face of the challenges created by the coronavirus pandemic.
“Endeavour has been keenly focused on creating value through the drill bit,” de Montessus added.
The company moved Kari Pump from discovery to production in under three years, which de Montessus said was testament to an aggressive exploration strategy and the value of strong, established government partnerships in West Africa.
“Getting the Kari Area permit was a key 2020 milestone and will positions us to achieve the upper end of our production target at Houndé as we benefit from mining higher grade ore at Kari Pump,” de Montessus added. “The Kari Area continues to hold exciting upside potential and we will be providing an updated resource estimate for the entire area in the coming weeks.”
Endeavour has dedicated up to $11 million for its 2020 exploration program at Houndé, consisting of 94,000 planned metres to delineate additional resources.
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