SUNBIZ

$75M-Plus To Build Tuvatu Gold Mine, Says Mann

Gold production is expected to commence at Tuvatu mine next year, Lion One has said. Construction of Lion One’s Tuvatu gold mines will commence when the constraints of the COVID-19
13 Jul 2021 14:41
$75M-Plus To Build Tuvatu Gold Mine, Says Mann
Part of the civil works carried out in the lead up to the construction of Lion One’s gold mine in Tuvatu, Nadi. Inset: Lion One’s outgoing managing director, Stephen Mann.

Gold production is expected to commence at Tuvatu mine next year, Lion One has said.

Construction of Lion One’s Tuvatu gold mines will commence when the constraints of the COVID-19 pandemic has eased.

Outgoing managing director, Stephen Mann said construction of the mines in Sabeto, Nadi, would take 18 months.

The company hopes to construct a 300 tonnes per day (tpd) process plant.

An additional $75 million would be spent on the plant and pre-production underground development, Mr Mann said.

Mining and process plant construction will start in the dry season of 2022, he told SunBiz.

It is anticipated that the process plant would be completed, commissioned to start gold production by the end of 2022.

The construction of the new mine entrance and decline is expected to commence this year, he said.

“As there was little or no previous infrastructure at Tuvatu prior to Lion One’s development activities, the company needed to build everything required for future operations,” Mr Mann said.

Development of Tuvatu mine 

The much-needed infrastructure included: 

  • construction of roads, 
  • tap water and electricity supply, 
  • offices, 
  • workshops, 
  • storage facilities, 
  • ablution blocks, and 
  • mess areas. 

Lion One will also start building surface infrastructure for underground development.

Elisha Engineering has commenced construction of the drilling and mining workshops, offices, and stores sheds.

The final plans for the processing plant are being drawn up with two finalists shortlisted for the construction contract, he said.

Mr Mann confirmed access to the initial underground operation would be by two declines, rather than by shafts.

The company will not construct any shafts for its operations, he said.

Tailing dams have been selected by international specialists.

“To date the company has identified gold bearing rock nearly one kilometre below the surface and it believes this gold bearing rock will continue for at least twice that depth.

“To work out where this gold is, the company has bought six drill rigs, four of which are capable of drilling well past one kilometre deep,” Mr Mann said.

The company has already introduced specialised expertise and technology previously not seen in Fiji to ensure current and future success of mining activities in Fiji.

Feedback: susana.tuilau@fijisun.com.fj



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