Phu Kham Copper-Gold Operation
The Phu Kham Copper-Gold Operation is PanAust's flagship Operation. It is located within PanAust's Phu Bia Mining Contract Area in Laos approximately 140 kilometres from the capital city, Vientiane. The significant cash flow generated by the Phu Kham Operation has supported PanAust’s growth while contributing to a strong balance sheet.
The Operation comprises an open-pit mine feeding ore to a conventionally milling and flotation operation which produces a copper and precious metals concentrate for export to custom smelters mainly in Asia. The concentrate contains approximately 23 per cent copper, 9 grams per tonne (g/t) gold and up to 60g/t silver. Phu Kham's concentrate is trucked in covered containers with 80 per cent transported to the ports of Vung Ang or Hon La in Vietnam (approximately 650 kilometres from Phu Kham) with the remaining 20 per cent trucked to Sriracha Harbour in southern Thailand (approximately 1,000 kilometres from Phu Kham) for export to smelters mainly in Asia.
December quarter 2017 production
Production of copper in concentrate at Phu Kham totalled 23,394 tonnes (t) during the December quarter 2017. A C1* cost of US$1.00/lb copper was realised.
Overall copper recovery averaged more than 83 per cent for the quarter. Quarterly pay-metals in concentrate sales totalled 24,453t of copper, 20,599oz of gold and 160,440oz of silver.
Annual copper in concentrate production at Phu Kham is expected to peak in 2018 and 2019 before subsequently declining with ore grade. No further development capital is currently expected to maintain these levels.
Gold in concentrate is expected to range between 70,000oz and 80,000oz per annum.
The Phu Kham Ore Reserve supports a mine life of approximately four years from the end of 2017.
For the most up-to-date information about the Phu Kham Operation, see the quarterly reports and other statements on the Company Announcements page.
*Brook Hunt convention for the reporting of direct costs comprising: mine site, product transportation and freight, treatment and refining charges and marketing costs; based on payable metal content after by-product credits
**AISC reported are the C1 cost plus royalties, allocated corporate support charges, shared services costs, sustaining capital; lease principal and interest charges; and deferred mining and inventory adjustments capitalised