Kiziltepe gold beats Ariana guidance

Turkey-focused gold producer closed out 2020 in style

Ariana Resources' Kiziltepe mine in western Turkey

Ariana Resources' Kiziltepe mine in western Turkey

Ariana, moving from 50% to 23.5% ownership under its rejigged joint venture with local partners Ozaltin Holding and Proccea Construction, said Kiziltepe gold output was 18,645oz for the year, compared with 27,985oz in 2019. Silver sales in 2020 were 244,372oz versus 363,646oz the previous year.

But stronger gold and silver prices in 2020 saw Ariana's revenue hold at about US$37 million compared with $45.1 million in 2019.

"The final quarter of 2020 rounded off another solid year of production for Kiziltepe," Ariana managing director Dr Kerim Sener said.

A permitting review is said to be underway on expanding openpit mining at Arzu North and Derya, with the partners aiming to boost plant throughput to 500,000 tonnes per annum in the second half of this year.

Kiziltepe is part of the Red Rabbit JV Ariana has with Proccea.

Mine report production will be reported every six months rather than quarterly under the revised ownership.

Elsewhere, Ariana said diamond drilling at the Magellan gold project in north Troodos, Cyprus, would start soon after percussion drilling picked up near-surface anomalous gold geochemistry. Magella has a JORC 2012 resource of 9.5 million tonnes grading an average 0.65% copper.

"We are also fast-tracking some other exciting copper-gold project opportunities in the region, further details of which will be announced in due course," Sener said.

AIM-listed Ariana shares have been on an upward trajectory over the past six months and are currently changing hands at 5p, valuing the company at just under £56 million.

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