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Thursday, 3 December 2020

Centamin is pouring resources into Sukari in search of higher-grade gold

Centamin to pour resources into Sukari in search of higher-grade gold: Egypt-focused Australian gold miner Centamin will invest USD 595 mn between 2021 and 2024 to up productivity and cut operating costs at its Sukari mine in the Eastern Desert, the company said yesterday. The investment will go into increasing waste stripping at the mine, which the company believes will up its production from 445-455k oz currently to 450-500k oz by 2024. CEO Martin Horgan said the company is now focusing on “generating strong and sustainable cash flows,” telling reporters that it was ending its previous “dogmatic” emphasis on production targets.

Waste stripping? Put simply, it’s a process that enables miners to extract higher-quality gold. Centamin has awarded the local office of LSE-listed Capital Drilling a four-year contract to do the work, the company said in a separate statement.

Production at the Sukkari mine is expected to fall by as much as 42% this quarter after extraction plans slated for this year were put on hold after parts of the mine were shut for safety reasons. Centamin was among 11 companies awarded gold exploration rights last month for 82 blocks in the Eastern Desert in the government’s latest exploration tender.

In other investment news-

Eastern Company will invest EGP 1.1 bn during the current fiscal year, the local press reports, citing a statement made by managing director Hany Aman to Reuters on the sidelines of the Egypt Economic Summit. The funds will go toward manufacturing cigarette machines and producing tobacco fruit molasses, Aman said, adding that the company aims to grow its top line by 10% in FY2020-2021, from the EGP 14.5 bn recorded in FY2019-2020. Eastern Company dominates the local market for tobacco products with a 70% market share.

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