Production

Located in Ghana, West Africa, the Asanko Gold Mine is a 50:50 joint venture with Gold Fields Ltd (JSE, NYSE: GFI) which is managed and operated by Asanko. The mine is a multi-deposit complex, with two main deposits, Nkran and Esaase, and nine satellite deposits. The mine is being developed in phases.

The first phase comprised the construction of a 3 Mtpa carbon-in-leach (CIL) processing facility and bringing the first pit, Nkran, into production. Phase 1 was funded by cash on hand and a $150 million debt facility and was completed in early 2016 within budget and ahead of schedule. Gold production commenced in January 2016, commercial production was declared on April 1, 2016, and the operation reached steady-state production levels by the end of the second quarter of 2016.

In 2017 the satellite deposits Akwasiso and Dynamite Hill were also brought into production and the second phase of development, known as Project 5 Million (P5M) got underway. The first stage of P5M, the brownfield modifications and upgrades to the CIL processing plant to increase throughput to 5Mtpa, was implemented during the year. The volumetric upgrades achieved name plate capacity in December 2017 with the processing plant operating at a 5Mtpa annualized milling rate. Installation and commissioning of the P5M recovery circuit upgrades were completed in Q1 2018.

In 2018, the AGM is targeting 200,000 – 220,000 ounces of gold at AISC of $1,050 – $1,150/oz. During the year, ore will be sourced from Nkran, Akwasiso, Dynamite Hill and surface stockpiles. 


The Asanko Gold Mine currently consumes up to 18MW of power. Asanko has built a 30km long, 161kV power line connecting the Project site to the national power grid at the Asawinso substation, which was completed in November 2015, along with the 161/11kV substation at site. In February 2016, Asanko signed a five-year power purchase agreement with the Volta River Authority (VRA).

Approximately 1,680 people are employed at the mine; 391 full time employees, 1,295 contractors. 97% of the total workforce are Ghanaians, of which around 44% are from the local communities.

Geology

The Nkran deposit is located within the Kumasi Basin on the "Asankrangwa gold belt". The basin is bound to the south by the Ashanti Fault/Shear and the Bibiani shear to the north. The Asankrangwa gold belt expresses itself as a complex of northeast trending shear zones situated along the central axis of the Kumasi Basin. The Nkran deposit is located on a jog along the regional Nkran Shear, which is a zone of about 15 km in width and may be traced on a northeast to southwest trend for a distance of some 150 km. This is one of several major northeast trending shears/structures that bisect the Kumasi Basin/Asankrangwa Gold Belt.

The regional/local (Kumasi Basin) geological setting is heavily faulted and consists of an isoclinally folded sequence of metasediments, dominated by turbiditic sequences of greywackes and shales, intercolated with rare andesites and volcanoclastics, previously described as greywackes, phyllites, argillites and shales.

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