Fortuna Silver Mines Inc. is pleased to provide an update on construction activities at its Séguéla gold Project located in Côte d’Ivoire. All references to dollar amounts in this news release are expressed in US dollars.
David Whittle, Chief Operating Officer – West Africa, commented, “We are pleased to report two significant milestones in the construction process with the energization of the high voltage substation and the commencement of the SAG mill installation.” Mr. Whittle added, “The project continues on-time and on-budget with the majority of materials and equipment now on site. Focus has now shifted to operational readiness in preparation for the commissioning of the processing plant with first gold pour expected in mid-2023.”
Lycopodium has progressed in advancing the critical path scopes for the processing plant. As of the start of December, ongoing construction activities include:
- Installation of the SAG mill commenced with a Metso-Outotec representative on site
- Installation of carbon-in-leach (CIL) top-of-tank steel platform
- Assembly of conveyors
- Erection of the gold room commenced
- Mechanical equipment installations in the crushing, surge bin and milling and grinding areas
- Installation of overland piping and the 11kV overhead powerline commenced
The installation of the SAG mill remains on the project’s critical path and, despite global supply chain challenges, all critical components are now on site significantly reducing risk to the project schedule.
In early December, the high voltage substation and transformers were energized completing the grid connection scope of work. Power is now available for reticulation to the site infrastructure; namely, the processing plant ahead of commissioning activities in the second quarter of 2023.
Mining and Operational Readiness
Mota-Engil, the mining services contractor at Séguéla, is well underway with its mobilization activities for the project. First deliveries of the mining fleet have arrived on site and are being commissioned, including a 95 tonne excavator, two 100 tonne haul trucks, two dozers, one grader and two fuel trucks.
Preparations for the operational phase of the mine are progressing well. Construction progress in the mine services area and explosives facilities is on-track to support commencement of mining activities in the first quarter of 2023. Construction of the run-of-mine (ROM) pad has commenced along with grade control drilling following the clearing of the Antenna Stage 1 Pit.
Mine services area
Orders for spare parts, consumables and lubricants have been placed and are expected to arrive on site in the first quarter of 2023. Planning for the processing plant commissioning is underway with power and water supply available. Earthworks and high density polyethylene (HDPE) lining of the tailings storage facility (TSF) is expected to be completed by year end.
As of November 30, 2022, approximately $169 million of the total approved budget of $173.5 million, including $8.9 million contingency, has been committed. The total commitments to date include contracts for a guaranteed maximum price of $87 million, fixed price contracts for $15.4 million and earthworks bill of quantity and schedule of rates for $13.7 million.