Tsumeb smelter misses production guidance

• By Hilary Mare

DUNDEE Precious Metals’ Tsumeb smelter processed approximately 52 000 tonnes of complex concentrate during the fourth quarter, reflecting an eight-day maintenance shutdown to repair a water leak in the off-gas system, the company has said.

Announcing preliminary production results from both of its mines in Bulgaria and the Tsumeb smelter for the three and 12 months ended December 31 2021, David Rae, president and chief executive officer highlighted that as a result, the smelter processed approximately 189 700 tonnes of complex concentrate in 2021.

“This is slightly below the revised guidance range of 195 000 to 200 000 tonnes,” he said.

However, Rae said that the company’s mining operations continued to deliver impressive performance in the fourth quarter, driven by a new record for quarterly gold production at its other mines, Ada Tepe and Chelopech.

“Overall, 2021 was another very strong year for DPM as we delivered record annual gold production for the third consecutive year and achieved the higher end of our guidance range for gold production. We also added the high-quality Loma Larga project to our portfolio and continued to deliver strong sustainability performance as demonstrated through our score in the 2021 S&P Global Corporate Sustainability Assessment, which ranked in the 91st percentile among mining and metals companies,” Rae said further stating:

“Ada Tepe continued to deliver impressive operating performance, producing a record 33 800 gold ounces in the fourth quarter, which was slightly above plan due to higher grades. In 2021, Ada Tepe produced approximately 133 000 gold ounces, which was at the higher end of its annual production guidance for the year.”

Chelopech also had a strong operational quarter, producing approximately 49 000 ounces of gold and 9.2 million pounds of copper in the fourth quarter. Gold production was above expectations as a result of mining in higher grade gold zones and better recoveries.

In 2021, Chelopech produced approximately 177 000 ounces of gold which was above the higher end of its annual guidance. Copper production of 34.7 million pounds was in line with annual production guidance.

“The company plans to release its fourth quarter and full-year 2021 operating and financial results, detailed guidance for 2022 and updated three-year outlook after market close on Thursday, February 17, 2022,” Rae also said last week in a statement.

Dundee Precious Metals Inc. is a Canadian-based international gold mining company with operations and projects located in Namibia, Bulgaria, Serbia and Ecuador.