Wiluna concentrator operating above nameplate

WITH its stage one concentrator now humming along, Wiluna Mining Corporation is at a pivotal time in its life, and dreaming of a 2022 will deliver a significant boost in gold production.
Wiluna concentrator operating above nameplate Wiluna concentrator operating above nameplate Wiluna concentrator operating above nameplate Wiluna concentrator operating above nameplate Wiluna concentrator operating above nameplate

The first WMC concentrate bagged and ready for sale

Haydn Black


Commissioning of the sulphide concentrator commenced late in the December quarter, and the plant is expected to reach its full run rate of 100,000-120,000 ounces per annum in June.
The miner said the concentrator has been successfully commissioned, and had outperformed nameplate capacity, which puts it in a good position as it completes its transitional phase over the next six months.
For the December quarter, the Western Australian miner's namesake operations at Wiluna produced 7750 ounces, with sales of 5863oz at an average price of A$2439.42/oz. Costs were not disclosed.
WMC reported positive net cash from operations, before overheads, of $8.3 million, with the company ending the quarter with cash and bullion of $41.6 million following a successful $53 million capital raise, and net debt of $23 million.
It had 156,000oz hedged at US$1820/oz, a negative mark-to-market position of A$5 million.
WMC ended 2021 with 1159t of gold concentrate with an average grade of 69 grams per tonne ready for export in early February.
It was another big spending quarter to support the transition from free-milling ore to sulphide material, with almost $47 million outlaid to support the concentrator development, work on the Wiltails tailings recovery project continues, and 2739m of development were completed by contractor Byrnecut, in line with expectations.
WMC said its underground sulphide development was on schedule, and 88,731t of ore was mined over the six months to December 31, with 139,000t of ore in stockpiles.
Wiltails is now 20% complete and should allow recovery of a further 579,000oz. It should be commissioned in May.
Looking ahead, WMC has commenced a 40,000m discovery drilling program, hoping to increase resources from 5.5Moz at 2.19gpt, and it is finalising its stage two feasibility study for March, targeting an expansion to 250,000ozpa.
A UK listing is also still on the cards.
WMC shares, which have traded between 86c and $1.39 over the past year were off 2% in early trade at $1.07, valuing it at $230 million.