NQ Minerals reports increased production results at Hellyer gold mine

NQ Minerals

NQ Minerals plc (AQSE:NQMI, OTCQB:NQMLF, OTCQB:NQMIY) announced it achieved excellent production levels of metals concentrates for the Second Quarter ending June 30 2020, despite the COVID-19 pandemic,  from the Company’s flagship Hellyer Gold Mine in Tasmania, Australia.

Hellyer’s lead concentrate production for Q2 totalled 8,762 tonnes and zinc concentrate production totalled 4,241 tonnes. In addition, NQ advises that a total of 1,223 ounces of gold and 229,947 ounces of silver were produced as payable precious metal credits in the lead and zinc concentrate streams for the Quarter. Refer to Table 1 for detailed analysis. During H1 2020, the Company generated an unaudited Revenue from Mining Operations of A$30m and an operating Gross Profit of A$12m.   

Major plant upgrades and process optimisation plans were implemented at Hellyer in the last week of June 2020, which successfully increased plant throughput by 44% to a rate of over 1.3 million tonnes per annum (1.2Mtpa at 92% plant availability), compared to 2019’s full year plant production numbers.

Table 1: Hellyer Operations – Production Performance for Q2 and Q1 2020.

Production Statistics:Q2 2020Q1 2020
Processed tonnes (t)252,188225,764
· Lead grade (%)2.832.80
· Zinc Grade (%)2.192.18
· Gold Grade (g/t)2.362.38
· Silver Grade (g/t)8486
Lead Concentrates Produced (t)8,7628,127
· Lead Recovery (%)46.6448.02
· Lead (%)37.9437.41
· Gold grade (g/t)4.344.14
· Gold produced (oz)112231,081
· Silver grade (g/t)709786
· Silver produced (oz) 1199,845205,396
Zinc Concentrates Produced (t)4,2414,609
· Zinc Recovery (%)34.8942.54
· Zinc Grade (%)45.4745.51
· Silver grade (g/t)221169
· Silver produced (oz)230,10224,045

Note1: Gold and silver credits are payable in lead concentrates.

Note2: Silver credits are payable in zinc concentrates.

David Lenigas, NQ Minerals Chairman, said: 

NQ’s Hellyer operations have performed extremely well last Quarter, especially considering the current global COVID-19 pandemic. COVID-19 represents an unprecedented challenge for people, governments and businesses worldwide. The Tasmanian Government responded quickly to the virus and was the first State in Australia to limit any travel to its island State and has implemented strict controls within the state. Confirmed COVID-19 infections in the State are very low. The end of June production rate increase at the processing plant to 150 tonnes per hour was a big step forward at Hellyer and has been very successfully implemented. It will have a very significant and immediate impact on future revenues.

Hellyer’s COVID-19 Response Plan:

The Tasmanian Government has implemented a strict lockdown across the State to control the spread of COVID-19 and the Company is working strictly to the protocols put in place by the Government. We will review and adjust our business continuity measures as the situation evolves and we will continue to be guided by the latest advice from medical and government authorities.

The mining industry in Tasmania has been classed as an essential service, and as such mining and processing operations at Hellyer continue.

At the present time there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 at the Hellyer operations. In response to the health risks associated with COVID-19, Hellyer has implemented a series of health and safety protocols on a company-wide basis.

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