MELBOURNE, Australia, Sept. 21, 2012 /CNW/ - Newcrest Mining Limited
("Newcrest") (ASX: NCM) (TSX: NM) today announced a temporary reduction
in plant capacity at Lihir.
Newcrest's Lihir operation in Papua New Guinea has temporarily reduced
production to approximately 25% of plant capacity due to an issue with
the electrical system in the main oxygen plant. The oxygen plant
supplies oxygen to the autoclaves to facilitate the pressure oxidation
process which enables gold recovery from the ore feed.
Newcrest's maintenance team and the equipment manufacturer are
addressing the issue and are working to have the plant ready for
restart in the coming few days. Full production capacity is expected to
be restored within 10 days.
Guidance for Lihir's full year production for the 2013 financial year
remains unchanged at 700,000 to 900,000 ounces. Newcrest's full year
production guidance remains unchanged at 2.3 to 2.5 million ounces of
gold and 75 to 85 thousand tonnes of copper.
The reduced operation of the existing processing plant during this
period does not impact the million ounce plant upgrade (MOPU) project,
which remains on track for completion during the December 2012
quarter. The previously announced Lihir plant refurbishment program
continues and will be completed during the 2014 financial year.
As previously advised to the market, gold production for the September
2012 quarter was planned to be lower than the June 2012 quarter before
increasing through the 2013 financial year. With the lower production
from Lihir and Ridgeway during the quarter, gold production for the
September 2012 quarter is expected to be approximately 460,000 ounces.
A copy of the release can be found on Newcrest's website: www.newcrest.com.au and on SEDAR: www.sedar.com.
SOURCE: Newcrest Mining Limited
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