Newmont Mining to Build First Phase of New Long Canyon Mine
Newmont Mining Corporation announced that it will build the first phase of Long Canyon, an oxide mine with significant upside potential in an emerging gold district located less than 100 miles from its existing Nevada operations.
The first phase of development consists of an open pit mine and heap leach operation with expected gold production of between 100,000 and 150,000 ounces per year over an eight year mine life at an estimated all-in sustaining cost of between $500 and $600 per ounce. At current gold prices, the project is expected to generate around $100 million annually, beginning in 2017.
“Taking a phased approach to developing Long Canyon gave us the means to lower development capital to between $250 million and $300 million; generate an internal rate of return of about 17 percent at current gold prices; and reduce the payback period to just over four years after first commercial production, which we expect to reach in the first half of 2017,” said Gary Goldberg, President and Chief Executive Officer.
“I’m confident that we have the engineering, ore body knowledge and community agreements in place to deliver this project safely, on time and on budget.”
The project will be funded through free cash flow and available cash balances, and leverage Newmont’s existing equipment, infrastructure and personnel. Capital expenditures will be allocated roughly equally in 2015 and 2016, with minimal spending in 2017. Project highlights include:
• High grade oxide ore processed by heap leaching
• Gold reserves of 1.2 million ounces at an average grade of 2.29 grams per tonneiii and highly prospective mineralization over a three mile strike length
• Estimated annual gold production of between 100,000 and 150,000 ounces over an eight year mine life for the first phase of operation
• Estimated average costs applicable to sales of between $400 and $500 per ounce and all-in sustaining costs of between $500 and $600 over the life of the mine; in the lowest cost quartile for gold production
• Leveraging 50 years’ experience operating in Nevada by relying on existing equipment, infrastructure and personnel
Federal and state permits necessary to proceed with development of the project have been secured following a 36-month study and public comment period. Once in operation, Long Canyon Phase 1 is expected to directly employ about 260 people. Newmont will continue to engage and partner with local and regional stakeholders throughout construction, operations and closure.
Newmont strengthened its underlying business in 2014, lowering consolidated gold all-in sustaining costs by approximately 10 percent or $100 per ounce and ending the year with nearly $6 billion in liquidity. The Company also generated $1.4 billion in the sale of non-core assets over the last two years. Continued strong performance is expected to generate positive free cash flow over the next three years, and provide the means to invest in profitable growth, pay down debt and return cash to shareholders.
Read the full press release here.