Gold extraction may be doubled in Azerbaijan

Business Materials 14 May 2012 13:23 (UTC +04:00)

Azerbaijan, Baku, May 14 / Trend A. Akhundov /

By starting up gold mining at the Gosha field will ennable Anglo Asian Mining plc. (gold producer in Azerbaijan), to exceed the amount of its production level by 100,000 ounces of gold per year, director general of the company RezaVaziri said in an interview, published in the international journal The business year.

The company is entitled to develop several oil fields in Azerbaijan and currently extracts gold from only one field at Gadabay where the production volume totalled 57,068 ounces of gold in 2011. The company expects to extract 54,000 ounces of gold in 2012.

"Taking into account the production at the Gosha field, the volume of gold production by our company will exceed 100,000 ounces per year," Vaziri said. "This will allow us to obtain the status of a medium mining company."

He said that the field is at the top of the mountain which greatly complicates the work of the company.

"According to our estimations there are about 300,000 ounces of gold only at one of 13 field plots," he said. "Other sites are being examined. The company plans to launch an installation at the field which will produce from 15,000 to 20,000 ounces of concentrated gold annually."

Previously, the company decided to build a vat leaching plant at the Gadabay gold and copper field. The plant is due to be commissioned in the second half of 2013.
He said that it is unknown whether the company will sell the gold immediately after extraction, or that this will happen after its processing at the proposed vat leaching plant.

The plant will process ore and resources not suitable for heap leaching which is a method of obtaining gold from ore currently used in the field. Vat leaching technology allows an extraction of more than 90 per cent of the gold contained in ore, whereas the figure is about 70 per cent in heap leaching.

According to estimates, gold extraction is expected to reach 85 per cent of the oxide ore and 69 per cent sulphide. However, the company continues conducting tests to improve these indices. The new plant is designed to process 100 tons of ore per hour.