Location and Description of the Project
The 3.8 million ounce Montagne d’Or gold deposit at 2.14 gramme per tonne is located in north-west French Guiana, 180 kilometers west of the capital, Cayenne, and 80 kilometres south of the department capital, Saint-Laurent-du-Maroni. The Project's base camp can accommodate 65 people.
Nordgold has a right to earn a 50.01% interest in the Montagne d'Or deposit and the Paul Isnard mineral claims by funding a minimum of US$30 million in expenditures and completing a Bankable Feasibility Study by no later than March 2017. Montagne d’Or Mineral Resources will be included in Nordgold’s Mineral Base after the Company receives a 50.01% interest in the project.
Nordgold spent US$16 million in 2014. In 2015, planned work includes in-fill drilling to increase confidence in the resource and to better define saprolite resources, conversion of Indicated resources to the Measured category, condemnation drilling of the proposed infrastructure sites, geotechnical and hydrogeological investigations, and advanced additional metallurgical test work to support processing plant design.
Nordgold also holds ~9% of Columbus Gold Corp.(“Columbus Gold”, CGT: TSX-V), a 100% owner of Montagne d’Or gold deposit. In October 2014, Mr. Oleg Pelevin, Director of Strategy and Corporate Development for Nordgold, was appointed to Columbus Gold’s board of directors.
Montagne d’Or is located within the Guiana Gold Belt. The mineral deposits of the Guiana Gold Belt are very similar to those in other greenstone terrains such as in West Africa. This will enable Nordgold to apply its deep knowledge of West African geology to the Project and other projects in the region. Columbus Gold, with its many years of operational experience in French Guiana and unique local knowledge will serve a strong partner in the advancement of the project.
Mineralisation consists of semi-massive sulphide bands, stringers and dissemination of probable volcanic origin. Visible gold is rarely observed and preliminary mineralogical work suggests that it occurs along microfractures and on sulphide grain boundaries. Mineral deposits are typical of those in other greenstone terrains such as in Canada, Australia and West Africa. Potential future mining will be by open pit.
Based on the current NI 43-101 in-pit gold resource estimates (based on $US 1,300/oz gold price), carried-out by independent consultants SRK, utilising a cut-off grade of 1.0 g/t the Montagne d'Or Gold Deposit hosts 2.92 Moz of Indicated gold resources at 2.15 g/t and 0.88 Moz of Inferred gold resource at 2.11 g/t. Total Mineral Resources (Indicated + Inferred) are 3.80 Moz at 2.14 g/t.
- The NI 43-101 compliant Preliminary Economic Assessment (“PEA”) for Montagne d’Or was finalised on July 8, 2015.
- The PEA demonstrated positive economic data for an open pit mine with conventional CIL processing technology and average annual production of 273 koz in the first 10 years.
- Based on a set of conservative estimates, which represent significant upside potential for the operation, after-tax NPV is US$324 million at 8% and IRR is 23% at a gold price of US$1,200 per ounce.
- Metallurgical tests from Montagne d'Or produced excellent gold recoveries in excess of 90%.
The positive PEA results give Nordgold confidence to progress the project towards a Feasibility Study to de-risk and further improve its economics.
In October 2015, Lycopodium Minerals Pty Ltd won the tender to complete the Feasibility Study on the Montagne d’Or Gold Deposit. The study will also be completed with the participation of globally recognized engineering consultants SRK Consulting Inc. of Denver, CO.
Under the terms of the contract, Lycopodium is expected to deliver the NI 43-101 compliant final Feasibility Study by Q4 2016.
The Preliminary Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) and terms of references were completed in Q1 2015 and completion of the ESIA is expected by Q4 2016.