SEP 26, 2007 - 08:24 ET
High River Gold Achieves Commercial Production at the Taparko-Bouroum Gold Mine
TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Sept. 26, 2007) - High River Gold Mines Ltd. (TSX:HRG) ("High River") is pleased to announce that it has achieved Commercial Production at its Taparko-Bouroum Gold Mine in Burkina Faso. The criteria established for Commercial Production stipulated that all components of the processing plant were to operate for 30 consecutive days at 60% capacity or better. Mill throughput during the 30 day period ending September 24th, 2007 totaled 60,825 tonnes, representing an average capacity utilization of 74%. The mill is currently operating at over 80% capacity.|
The effective date of Commercial Production for accounting purposes will be October 1, 2007, at which time gold sales and operating costs will begin to be reported on High River's income statement. Prior to October 1, 2007, gold sales and operating costs have been capitalized for financial reporting purposes.
The Taparko-Bouroum Gold Mine produced 3,623 ounces of gold during the 30 day commercial production evaluation period. Prior to the commencement of the evaluation period, a total of 1,269 ounces of gold was produced. It is anticipated that up to October 1, 2007, a total of 5,642 ounces will have been produced with the associated revenue being credited against the capital cost of the project.
Gold production for 2007 is expected to total approximately 30,000 ounces, with annual production planned at 100,000 ounces, rising to over 140,000 ounces in the third year of operation. Approximately 214,000 tonnes of ore (equivalent to three months of production) remain stockpiled, ready for processing.
The successful start of commercial production at the Taparko-Bouroum Gold Mine is a major accomplishment and milestone in the growth of High River, as it is the first gold mine taken from discovery through to production entirely by the High River team. The Taparko-Bouroum Gold Mine also marks the revival of a modern gold mining industry in Burkina Faso, as it is the first commercially operated gold mine in the country since the last gold mine closed in 1999.
The official Mine Opening Ceremony will be held on October 8, 2007. Joining High River in celebrating this momentous occasion will be the Prime Minister of Burkina Faso, federal and local government officials, as well as the local community.
About High River
High River is bringing two new open-pit gold mines into production this year, the Taparko-Bouroum Gold Mine in Burkina Faso and the Berezitovy Gold Mine in Russia (4th quarter). Annual gold production from Taparko-Bouroum is planned at 100,000 ounces for the first 12 months increasing to over 140,000 ounces in the third year of operation, and annual production from Berezitovy is expected to exceed 100,000 ounces. Combined with gold production from High River's 85%-owned Russian subsidiary, OJSC Buryatzoloto, High River's attributable unhedged gold production is expected to be approximately 175,000 ounces in 2007, and to exceed 300,000 ounces in 2008. In addition, the Company has two advanced exploration projects, the Bissa Gold Project in Burkina Faso and the world-class Prognoz Silver Project in Russia. These projects are expected to significantly add to the Company's production profile in the future.
Forward Looking Statements - This press release contains forward-looking statements based on current expectations. These forward-looking statements entail various risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those reflected. Risk and uncertainties about the Company's business are more fully discussed in the Management's Discussion and Analysis published in the Company's Annual Report and in the Annual Information Form.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:
High River Gold Mines Ltd.
Vice President, Investor Relations
(416) 360-0010 (FAX)
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