Kinross CEO Rollinson says Mauritania’s Tasiast was group’s stand-out performer in 2020

J Paul Rollinson, president and CEO, Kinross Gold Corporation.

KINROSS president and CEO, J. Paul Rollinson, said the firm’s Tasiast mine in Mauritania was its standout performer for the 2020 financial year ended December 31.

The mine produced 406,509 ounces of gold – a new record – compared to 2019 production of 391,097 oz. Including production from Chirano, which was lower year-on-year owing to reduced grades, West African operations totalled 573,099 oz (2019: 592,393 oz) – equal to 24% of Kinross production for 2020 of 2.37 million oz.

The Canadian miner said that for 2021, gold production from its West African assets would contribute 22% (520,000 oz) of 2.4 million oz in group forecast production. Group equivalent annual gold production was expected to increase to 2.7 and 2.9 million oz in the 2022 and 2023 financial years respectively.

“Tasiast was a standout performer and achieved record annual production and low costs for the second consecutive year,” said Rollinson in a commentary to the firm’s results.

Tasiast is currently in the throes of a second phase expansion that will take production to an average of 563,000 oz a year between 2022 and 2028.

Kinross said today that the expansion – known as Tasiast 24k project – remained on budget and on schedule with Tasiast expected to increase throughput capacity to 21,000 tons a day of ore by the end of 2021, and then to 24,000 t/d by mid-2023.

“The project is now approximately 60% complete, with mechanical work on the processing plant and construction of the power plant both proceeding well,” the company said.

At Chirano, Kinross added 660,000 oz to the mine’s mineral reserves estimates before depletion resulting in a three-year mine life extension to 2025.