Turquoise Hill Resources announced second quarter 2018 production for Oyu Tolgoi as well as the completion of Shaft 5.
Luke Colton, interim Chief Executive Officer of Turquoise Hill, said, “During the second quarter, Oyu Tolgoi continued processing Phase 4A ore resulting in improved gold grades, production and recovery. This trend is expected for the remainder of the year. Mill throughput during the quarter benefited from high intensity blasting, which was introduced in 2017. Oyu Tolgoi continues to make good underground development progress, as evidenced by the completion of Shaft 5.”
Mill throughput increased 6.3% over Q1’18 due to higher utilization rates and the positive impact of high intensity blasting. Copper production in Q2’18 increased 1.5% over Q1’18 as a result of higher mill utilization rates offset by slightly lower grades from the depletion of Phase 6 ore. Gold production increased 19.0% over Q1’18 due to stronger mill utilization rates, higher grades from Phase 4A and increased recovery. Sales in Q2’18 benefited from improved logistics as inventory accumulated during the Q1’18 force majeure worked its way through the system.
Oyu Tolgoi is expected to produce 125,000 to 155,000 tonnes of copper and 240,000 to 280,000 ounces of gold in concentrates for 2018. Due to the positive impact of high intensity blasting, mill throughput for 2018 is expected to be approximately 40 million tonnes.
Shaft 5 completion
Oyu Tolgoi has achieved an important underground development milestone with the completed commissioning of Shaft 5, which is 1,178 metres deep and 6.7 metres in diameter. There is expected to be a step-up in underground activities
with the increased ventilation capacity from Shaft 5. The Company continues to expect the first draw bell in mid-2020 and sustainable first production in 2021.
Source: Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd.