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Newcrest to advance Red Chris block cave to feasibility

Australia’s Newcrest Mining has completed a pre-feasibility study (PFS) for a block cave development at its Red Chris mine in British Columbia, Canada and will proceed to the feasibility stage.
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Newcrest Mining's Red Chris in British Columbia, Canada

Staff reporter

The company said the PFS confirms the potential for Red Chris, in which it owns a 70% interest, to become a world class, long life mine to produce an average of 158,000 ounces of gold and 48,500 tonnes per year of copper over the life of mine.

Production from Macro Block 1 between 2029 and 2034 is forecast at 316,000oz/y gold and 80,000tpy copper.

The project will generate a net present value of C$2.3 billion and a 17% internal rate of return over an initial 31-year mine life at all-in sustaining cost of -$180/oz following a capital investment of $2.6 billion at a US$1,500/oz gold price and US$3.30/lb copper price.

The operation will exploit a reserve of 8.1 million ounces of gold and 2.2 million tonnes of copper with a feasibility expected to be completed in the second half of 2023.

"We believe that we can transform the asset into a tier one operation through the application of our proven industry-leading block caving technologies and, in doing so, provide attractive financial returns to shareholders as well as multi-generational employment and other opportunities in Tahltan territory and in British Columbia," said Newcrest Mining MD and CEO Sandeep Biswas.

The company believes there is still considerable exploration potential at Red Chris having made a discovery at East Ridge and identifying multiple high-grade pods in the East Zone, both of which are outside the scope of the PFS.