Multinational mining company, Endeavour Mining, has announced the discovery of a record three million ounces of gold, registered in the measured and indicated (M&I) categories, and 900,000 ounces of inferred resources in 2021 across its sizeable portfolio of West African assets, exceeding its target of 2.5 million ounces.
M&I resources discovered at the company’s Lafigué deposit, on the Fetekro property in Côte d’Ivoire, where Endeavour operates the Ity mine, saw an 18% increase to 2.9 million ounces, while inferred resources grew 309% to 270,000 ounces. The company also announced a 20% increase of M&I resources at its Houndé mine in Burkina Faso and 11% at its Sabodala-Massawa mine in the Republic of Senegal.
“We are particularly pleased with the significant discoveries made at our flagship mines, Ity, Houndé, and Sabodala-Massawa,” stated Endeavour Mining CEO, Sébastien de Montessus, adding, “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.”
The exploration efforts represent the successful completion of the first five-year discovery target of between 10 million and 15 million ounces of M&I resources between 2021 and 2025, with Endeavour stating that it plans to discover an additional 15 million to 20 million ounces of gold as part of the next five-year discovery target to extend the life of its mining assets beyond 10 years. Endeavour will also use this record-breaking installment to justify the development of a four-million-ton-per-year processing plant – as opposed to the previously planned three-million-ton-a-year plant – with de Montessus announcing that a definitive feasibility study on the company’s Fetekro mine is due for publication during Q1 2022.
The resource updates for Endeavour’s other assets are set to be included in its end-of-year reserve and resource report, which will be published with the company’s 2021 financial results, in March 2022.
“The immense effort and dedication from my team over the last five years has delivered over 10 million ounces of indicated resource discoveries across our legacy portfolio, at a discovery cost below $25 per ounce, thereby achieving our ambitious target,” added Patrick Bouisset, Executive Vice President of Exploration and Growth at Endeavour Mining. “We are particularly proud to have significantly extended the lives of our Houndé and Ity mines, raising their status to flagship assets, as well as the discovery of the Lafigué deposit on the Fetekro property, which is now an Endeavour-sized project.”
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West Africa is a region with high gold prospects, with 79 million ounces estimated to have been discovered in the past decade. The region also represents 12.5% of global gold output.