NEWS RELEASE TRANSMITTED BY Marketwired
FOR: Asanko Gold Inc.
TSX SYMBOL: AKG
NYSE MKT SYMBOL: AKG
JUNE 18, 2014
Asanko Gold Mine Phase 1 Project Update
Highlights: - Early works program at the Asanko Gold Mine and detailed
engineering advancing on schedule with a full investment decision planned for
July - Mineral Resource Estimate revision for Nkran and Adubiaso deposits
complete with no material change and detailed mine planning underway -
Definitive Project Plan to be published as an NI 43-101 compliant technical
report by Q4 2014 - Environmental permit conditions continue to be removed -
official moratorium declared over mining area in preparation for breaking
ground in Q3 2014 - New General Manager appointed and recruitment of key
operating personnel underway
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - June 18, 2014) - Asanko Gold Inc.
("Asanko" or the "Company") (TSX:AKG)(NYSE MKT:AKG) is
pleased to provide an update on activities at the fully funded and permitted
Asanko Gold Mine (the "AGM" or the "Project") in Ghana. In
early April, the Company engaged DRA as the Engineering, Procurement,
Construction and Management ("EPCM") contractor for the design and
construction of Phase 1 of the Project as well as Knight Piesold to design the
Tailings Storage Facility and carry out detailed geotechnical engineering works
for the site. Shortly thereafter, the Company initiated an early works program
designed to advance the critical activities that will allow the Company to
maintain its project schedule, targeting first gold in Q1 2016.
Detailed engineering and early works programs are proceeding on schedule,
ground breaking at the plant site is expected to commence in August 2014,
pending a positive investment decision on the Project by the Board in July.
Asanko Gold Mine Site Early Works
The site early works program, which began in April 2014 with a budget of
approximately US$16 million, has been progressing on schedule and on budget.
For photos of the early works progress at AGM, please click on the following
-- Upgrading of the site access road is nearing completion with 8km out of
11 km completed.
-- Refurbishment of the mining village is 80% complete.
-- The plant medical clinic construction is nearing completion and will be
operational in early July.
-- Mobile equipment orders have been placed and delivery of key equipment
is scheduled for July.
-- Refurbishment and upgrades to the site's airstrip have been completed
and inspected by the regulatory authorities.
-- Construction of the communication tower and office potable water systems
Since commencing work in early April, DRA have advanced several key front-end
engineering and design activities, including:
-- Plant layout is now complete, revised to incorporate a potential Phase 2
expansion to the plant.
-- An initial order is expected to be placed shortly for the detailed
design of the 161kV electrical infrastructure.
-- Various structural and civil designs are underway to allow bulk earth
works to commence at the plant site in August 2014.
-- Mechanical equipment list, process and instrumentation diagrams and
process design criteria have been completed.
-- Operating costs are in the process of being updated.
-- Civil, mechanical, electrical and infrastructure designs have been
completed to sufficient detail to allow the detailed capital cost to be
-- The Control Base Estimate ("CBE") or detailed capital cost estimate for
the Project is in the final stages of completion with all tenders
Knight Piesold have advanced geotechnical engineering with some additional
geotechnical drilling completed over the past two months to support the
detailed mine plan for the Nkran pit.
Resource Update & Mine Planning
Asanko's independent Qualified Person with respect to NI 43-101 has
completed revisions to the Mineral Resource Estimate ("MRE") for the
Nkran and Adubiaso pits, which are currently being used for detailed mine
While the overall MRE has not changed materially since the previous estimate
(announced in September 2012 and the basis for the Company's current
disclosure), the revised estimate incorporates a more detailed geological model
and utilises a combination of Indicator Kriging and Ordinary Kriging to bring a
higher level of confidence and detail to the MRE which makes it more suitable
for detailed mine planning.
DRA are currently working on the detailed mine plan, with a preliminary plan to
be ready for the Board's investment decision in July and the final plan to
be finalised during Q3 2014.
The revised MRE, detailed mine plan and CBE will all be combined into a
Definitive Project Plan which is expected to be completed by Q4 2014 and filed
as a NI 43-101 compliant technical report.
The contract tendering process has begun for the pre-strip component of the
Nkran pit, which the Company expects to begin in Q4 2014. The pre-stripping of
Nkran involves cutting back the existing pit from historical mining operations.
Total pre-strip requirements are approximately 26 million tonnes of material to
be moved to access the Nkran ore for the commencement of mining operations in
Q3 2015. The cost of the pre-strip has been included in the Project's
capital cost, as per the Company's current disclosure.
Phase 1 of the Project is fully permitted for the commencement of construction.
In early June, the Minerals Commission declared a moratorium over the expected
mining and infrastructure areas. The declaration of a moratorium is an
important precursor to construction activity and will establish the basis for
crop compensation and land use deprivation processes to commence with the local
communities. In addition, work is underway on a Resettlement Action Plan
("RAP") which will be reviewed and approved by the Ghanaian
Environmental Protection Agency in Q4 2014.
The Company continues to advance the permitting required to mine both Dynamite
Hill and the Phase 2 mining operations at Esaase. In early June, a Temporary
Mining Permit was received for the Esaase deposit which would allow mining
operations to commence at Esaase. Full environmental permitting at Esaase is
On June 1st, the Company officially appointed Jonathan Ebo Collins as General
Manager - Asanko Gold Mine. Charles Amoah, the current acting General Manager
and a metallurgist, will continue with the Company as Manager - Processing.
Recruitment is underway for other key operating positions as the Company
continues to build its organisational capability in Ghana.
Jonathan is a Ghanaian national and a mining engineer with over 25 years of
operational experience in the African mining sector. He has worked in Ghana,
South Africa and Liberia, predominantly for major natural resources companies
such as Xstrata Coal, Anglo American, Arcelor Mittal, Total, and Sasol. He
began his career with Ashanti Goldfields, now AngloGold Ashanti, at the Obuasi
mine before moving to South Africa to work in the coal industry. During his
career, he has been Mine Manager and General Manager of several large coal
operations with both open pit and underground mines and he has overseen
projects from construction and commissioning through to operations. He has won
multiple national safety awards in recognition of the outstanding safety
performance of the mines under his management. Jonathan holds a Bachelor of
Science and a Postgraduate Diploma in Mining Engineering and is a member of the
South African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (SAIMM).
For further information please visit www.asanko.com
About Asanko Gold Inc.
Asanko's vision is to become a mid-tier gold mining company that maximizes
value for all its stakeholders. Asanko's flagship project is the fully
financed, multi-million ounce Asanko Gold Mine Project located in Ghana, West
Asanko is managed by highly skilled and successful technical, operational and
financial professionals. The Company is strongly committed to the highest
standards for environmental management, social responsibility, and health and
safety for its employees and neighbouring communities.
Forward-Looking and other Cautionary Information
This release includes certain statements that may be deemed
"forward-looking statements". All statements in this release, other
than statements of historical facts, that address estimated resource
quantities, grades and contained metals, possible future mining, exploration
and development activities, are forward-looking statements. Although the
Company believes the forward-looking statements are based on reasonable
assumptions, such statements should not be in any way construed as guarantees
of future performance and actual results or developments may differ materially
from those in the forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual
results to differ materially from those in forward-looking statements include
market prices for metals, the conclusions of detailed feasibility and technical
analyses, lower than expected grades and quantities of resources, mining rates
and recovery rates and the lack of availability of necessary capital, which may
not be available to the Company on terms acceptable to it or at all. The
Company is subject to the specific risks inherent in the mining business as
well as general economic and business conditions. For more information on the
Company, Investors should review the Company's annual Form 20-F filing
with the United States Securities Commission and its home jurisdiction filings
that are available at www.sedar.com.
Neither Toronto Stock Exchange nor the Investment Industry Regulatory
Organization of Canada accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of
Cautionary Note to US Investors Regarding Mineral Reporting Standards:
Asanko has prepared its disclosure in accordance with the requirements of
securities laws in effect in Canada, which differ from the requirements of US
securities laws. Terms relating to mineral resources in this press release are
defined in accordance with National Instrument 43-101 - Standards of Disclosure
for Mineral Projects under the guidelines set out in the Canadian Institute of
Mining, Metallurgy, and Petroleum Standards on Mineral Resources and Mineral
Reserves. The Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC") permits
mining companies, in their filings with the SEC, to disclose only those mineral
deposits that a company can economically and legally extract or produce. Asanko
uses certain terms, such as, "measured mineral resources",
"indicated mineral resources", "inferred mineral resources"
and "probable mineral reserves", that the SEC does not recognize
(these terms may be used in this press release and are included in the public
filings of Asanko which have been filed with securities commissions or similar
authorities in Canada).
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:
Alex Buck, Manager - Investor Relations
Greg McCunn, Chief Financial Officer
Asanko Gold Inc.
INDUSTRY: Manufacturing and Production - Mining and Metals
-0- Jun/18/2014 11:00 GMT
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