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Endeavour achieves record annual discoveries, adding 3moz in M&I resources

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Heap leach at Ity gold mine. (Image courtesy of Endeavour Mining)

Endeavour Mining (LSE, TSX: EDV) announced on Monday the discovery of 3 million ounces of measured and indicated (M&I) resources and 900,000 ounces of inferred resources across its flagship assets in West Africa in calendar 2021.

These assets include the Ity, Houndé and Sabodala-Massawa mines as well as the Lafigué deposit on the Fetekro property. The M&I resources were discovered at a cost of $16/oz, exceeding the 2021 discovery target of 2.5 million ounces.

Exploration and resource estimation activities were prioritized at the flagship mines and Fetekro for incorporation into the upcoming definitive feasibility study (DFS), which the company says is due to be completed this quarter.

Resource updates for all the other assets will be included in the annual year-end reserve and resource update, expected to be published along with the full-year 2021 financial results in March 2022. Endeavour says it is well-positioned to achieve its five-year (2021-2025) discovery target of 15-20 million ounces of indicated resources at a discovery cost of less than $25/oz.

“The significant discoveries we have made showcase the strong exploration potential within our portfolio and continue to confirm West Africa as one of the world’s top regions for gold discoveries,” Sebastien de Montessus, president and CEO, said in a press release.

“Given today’s increase in indicated resources to approximately 3 million ounces and the strong additional exploration potential, we have decided to increase the envisaged nameplate throughput capacity of the plant by 33% to 4Mtpa and look forward to publishing the results of the DFS later this quarter,” de Montessus added.

At the Ity mine, Endeavour has added over 1 million ounces of resources, which de Montessus calls “an extraordinary achievement.” The West Flotouo deposit at Ity represents a significant discovery given its rich grades above 2 g/t Au, its size, and its location in close proximity to the plant, Endeavour says.

The company aims to integrate the deposit within the mine plan as soon as possible. Looking ahead, work is continuing to convert the inferred resources into indicated status.

At the Houndé mine, after locking-in more than 10 years of strong production visibility through the recent discoveries of Kari Pump and Kari Center, Endeavour has made another significant discovery with the Mambo deposit and expect to quickly integrate the higher-grade southern extension into the mine plan.

Given the significant resources defined over recent years and its current long mine life, the company will study the potential to bring this new discovery towards production.

At the Sabadola-Massawa mine, which was acquired last year, Endeavour has increased the M&I resource base by 10% with the addition of more than 600,000 ounces of gold. The company plans to pursue more drilling into 2022, with the goal of adding resources, both by extending known deposits and initiating exploration on several identified targets.

At the Fetekro property, continued exploration success at the Lafigué deposit, which now hosts approximately 3 million ounces of resources, means that it can be considered an anchor deposit capable of supporting an Endeavour-sized project, the company says.

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