Gold and Silver

Turquoise Hill says uncertain when Oyu Tolgoi shaft work can resume

Turquoise Hill says uncertain when Oyu Tolgoi shaft work can resume
Mining News Pro - It remains uncertain when work on the shafts providing ventilation to support the production ramp-up for Panels 1 and 2 at the Oyu Tolgoi underground project, in Mongolia, will be able to resume.

Rio Tinto-owned Turquoise Hill said on Friday that sinking works at shafts 3 and 4, which have been on care and maintenance since April, was dependent on specialist personnel returning to site.

The stalled shaft 3 and 4 projects, however, would not impact on the production ramp-up for Panel 0, which would be the first panel for mining at the underground project.

Turquoise Hill also reported that work on the primary crusher and the materials handling system continued, but that productivity had been significantly impacted by the reduction in specialist personnel on site, as well as by the cap on site workforce numbers associated with Covid-19 precautions.

In an attempt to mitigate the impact of these Covid-related effects, lateral development personnel were being redeployed to support the work on critical path infrastructure components, including the primary crusher and the materials handling system.

The company said it would provide a further update quantifying the impact of Covid-19 on costs and schedule in the fourth quarter.

Meanwhile, the Oyu Tolgoi openpit will produce 50 000 oz more of gold in 2021 than previously guided, as a result of higher grade gold-bearing ore from the South West pit being brought forward into 2020 and 2021.

The new guidance is for gold production of between 500 000 oz and 550 000 oz.

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