Centamin Unveils 3-Year Plan to Boost Efficiency at Egypt's Sukari Mine

02/12/2020

Centamin unveiled a three-year plan to boost efficiency and cash flow at Egypt's Sukari gold mine after years of operational difficulties and underfunding.

According to the plan, Sukari mine, which is Egypt's only commercial gold mine, will spend $595 million to increase its waste stripping to allow Centamin to produce between 450,000 and 500,000 ounces at the cost of $800-900 per ounce from 2024 and beyond.

Waste stripping is an extraction process that allows miners to access higher-grade ore. It will be executed at Sukari by drilling company Capital Ltd.

"The three-year guidance is characterized as an investment phase. We are looking to reset the asset from a production basis," Centamin chief executive Martin Horgan told reporters in a phone call.

Horgan said Centamin had "changed its philosophy" from a "dogmatic" focus on the 500,000-ounce target to a focus on cash flow.

"What we are looking for now is margin and cash flow generation... because that is what funds growth and that's what pays for the dividend rather than those headline ounces," he said.

The gold miner's cash flow will fund $104 million in dividends in 2020 and a minimum of $105 million in 2021.