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11/11 - Mine modifications to include processing

Unity Mining Limited Managing Director and CEO Andrew McIlwain announced yesterday that the next steps in advancing the development of its $250 million Dargues Gold Mine at Majors Creek, including the final processing of the ore right through to gold bars. 

The company held an Information session at Major Creek last night to explain the developments to the community.

Unity Mining acquired the Dargues Gold Mine in January 2013 and since then has completed pre-development works and undertaken technical reviews to determine the best way forward to activate the project. Unity Mining will submit a modification to the existing planning approval later this year. 

With a forecast production rate of 50,000 ounces of gold per year, the project is expected to have a 6 year life based on current reserves, including a 12 month construction period and 5 years operation. When underway the gold mine will generate employment, training and education in the local area with about 100 jobs during construction and 120 residential jobs during operation of the mine. 

Mr McIllain said “Increased employment in the area means opportunities for local small businesses to gear up to service this jobs boost. This project could see the revival of the area’s 1850s gold mining history as a local attraction.”

The project also has broad community benefits with $26.5 million already spent on preparatory works, wages, road works and maintenance, rates, community sponsorships and with local businesses, as well as a commitment of $375,000 towards a recreation facility in Braidwood and forecast NSW royalties of about $10 million. 

With Unity’s Henty Mine in northern Tasmania winding down, Mr McIllwain said that Dargues is “still a substantial project and a key part of Unity's portfolio.” 

“Over the last six months we have completed technical, engineering and financial modelling work to take the project forward” he said. Modifications to the Development Application will include the access road location, the stockpile location, the formal finish date of the project will be extended and final processing of the the ore to be onsite, using cyanide separation.

Mr McIllwain said “the good news is that 2000 or so trucks will be off the local roads.”

Any modification would have to go through Palerang Council, and the Department of Planning.

When the mine site was developed by Cortona Resources, the company insisted that there would be no final processing on-site when faced with stiff opposition from downstream water users.


Alex Rea

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