African Gold looks to deploy solar, thermal power in Mali

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African Gold Group Inc. [AGG-TSXV, AGGFF-OTCQX, 3A61] on Wednesday announced the results of a definitive feasibility study for the Kaboda Gold Project in Southern Mali.

The study envisages a 3.0 million tonne per year operation, producing 1.2 million ounces of gold over a 16-year mine life, with average annual gold production of 100,000 ounces in the first ten years.

The pre-production capital requirement is forecast to be US$152 million.

The Kobada deposit is expected to be mined as an open pit operation, utilizing articulated trucks and a hydraulic loader. Approximately 66% of the raw material to be mined is contained in saprolite and laterite ores.

However, due to the relatively poor electrical infrastructure in the region, tying to the national grid is not feasible. So, the company has looked to deploy a standalone 21-megawatt power plant.

Studies indicate that the development of a hybrid photovoltaic, battery energy storage system and thermal power plant funded by an independent power producer is the best option.

Construction of the process plant and associated infrastructure is expected to take about 19 months.

The announcement comes after African Gold said it had increased the total proven and probable reserves at the project to 1.23 million ounces of gold, a 66% increase from an earlier feasibility study dated June 17, 2020.

Total resources, including inferred resources have increased to 3.1 million ounces, the company said.

“Over the past two years, we have worked tirelessly to demonstrate that the Kobada Gold Project has the potential to be one of the largest new gold projects in West Africa,’’ said Africa Gold President and CEO Danny Callow.

“Since the implementation of management changes in August, 2019, and with new drilling campaigns totalling around 18,000 metres, we have managed to increase our reserve base by 144% (including 66% increase over the 2020 feasibility study).

Kobada is a predominantly free-dig operation, requires limited blasting, and processing of ore will be through a very simple and proven gravity plus CIL plant with recoveries of both oxides and sulphides, the company said.

The inclusion of sulphides in the updated feasibility study, which the company said are free milling and easy to process, opens significant future opportunities within the sulphide resource as well as continuing growth possibilities in the oxides it said.

The company said there continues to be significant potential to increase the 3.1 million ounces of total resources. That view is based on the detailed understanding and integrity of the current resource, on only four kilometres of the 55 kilometres of identified shear zones.

“Kobada is now positioned as a great construction opportunity, in a prolific gold-producing area of West Africa,’’ the company said in a press release.

The project is located in southern Mali, approximately 125 kilometres in a straight-ling southwest of the capital city Bamako. It is also situated adjacent to the Niger River and the international border with Guinea.

Kobada sits on one mining exploitation permit covering 136 square kilometres and two exploration permits covering 77 square kilometres and 45 square kilometres respectively. The permits are wholly owned by AGG Mali SARL, a unit of African Gold.

On September 28, 2021, Africa Gold shares were trading at 14 cents in a 52-week range of 23.5 cents and 11 cents.

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