From: Berhane Habtemariam (Berhane.Habtemariam@gmx.de)
Date: Thu Feb 26 2009 - 17:30:17 EST
Avion hopes to cut costs, boost revenue with new Mali mine plan
By: <http://www.miningweekly.com/author.php?u_id=103> Liezel Hill
Published on 26th February 2009
TORONTO (miningweekly.com) - Toronto-based Avion Resources has completed an
updated mine plan for its Segala/Tabakoto mine and mill complex, which it
believes will result in lower operating costs and improved revenue, compared
with an earlier plan.
Avion, which bought the Tabakoto mine and nearby Segala deposit last year
from fellow Canadian Nevsun Resources, aims to produce 66 000 oz of gold
Nevsun began production at Tabakoto in June 2006, but failed to turn a
profit at the mine, and finally placed it on care and maintenance in 2007,
to allow the company to focus on its lucrative Bisha project, in Eritrea.
Avion restarted the crusher and mill earlier this month, processing
stockpiles, which will be followed by openpit ore from Segala.
In the updated mine plan, the Segala open pits have been redesigned to
reduce stripping ratios and increase the resource tonnage to be mined.
Different ramp designs and wall configurations have been engineered and the
open pit production schedule has been refined with detailed pushback
Altogether, the changes to the mine plan will reduce start-up capital
expenditures by around $1-million, Avion sid.
The plans for underground mining remain essentially unchanged, although
there has been a slight reduction in mineral resources owing to the
increased tonnage mined by openpit.
Two consulting firms have been hired to further study underground mining and
geotechnical aspects at Segala, and a new resource model, which will focus
on developing the underground mining potential, is being developed for the
"Exploration drilling at Tabakoto has intersected numerous gold mineralized
zones that display sufficient grades and widths to potentially support an
underground mining operation," the company said.
"Avion is optimistic that this opportunity will provide future growth for
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