Platinum production at Unki Mine for the second quarter ended 30 June 2016 increased 12% to 17 800 ounces from 15 000 ounces the same period comparable, parent company Anglo American Platinum (Angloplat) has said.
The group said Unki’s improved underground mining efficiencies which resulted in increased milled volume were complemented by a 9% increase in grade.
Angloplat said the company is building upon the improved operational trend from the first quarter as it seeks to recover refined platinum production and continue to ramp up mines –Rio Grosvenor and Barro Alto.
“We also continue to demonstrate discipline in our key markets, particularly diamonds and platinum, in line with our focus on higher margin and lower cost assets,” said Angloplat.
The group has so far invested over $350 million in Unki since it started operations, producing 67 000 refined platinum ounces in 2013 and production has been on a steady rise since 2011.
Independently managed production (mined and purchased, but excluding third party purchase of concentrate) increased by 9% to 203 200 ounces, driven by strong production performances from Mototolo, Modikwa, BRPM and Kroondal, partly offset by Bokoni.
At group level Platinum production increased a marginal 1% to 585 700 ounces, whilst refined platinum production increased by 33% to 747 600 ounces, reflecting the recovery at the Precious Metals Refinery after a planned stock take and safety stoppage in Q1 2016, together with a Section 54 Stoppage which closed the PMR for 12 days and materially impacted production for a further 37 days.
“Strong mining performance was mostly offset by a fatal incident on 26 April 2016 which resulted in mine stoppage and a loss of 18 000 ounces of production,” said the group.
The remainder of the shortfall in refined production is expected to be caught up in Q3 2016,” said Angloplat.
Mogalakwena production decreased by 3% to 98 800 ounces whilst milled volumes increased by 6%. A return to normalized lower grades in Q2 resulted in the 3% decrease. Amandelbult production increased by 1% to 106 200 ounces.
Unki Platinum Mine is a 120 000 tonne-per-month operation and has a Mineral Resource of 10.5 4E million ounces and an Ore Reserve of 4.7 4E million ounces.