Managing Director of Golden Star Resources Wassa Limited, Shadrach Adjetey Sowah, has said the takeover of mining site operations will afford it the opportunity to accelerate production up to 250,000 ounces annually.
His comment follows the taking over of Golden Star Resources operations by Chinese mining firm Chifeng Jilong Gold Mining Limited. According to him, by third year of the acquisition production is expected to scale up to 250,000 ounces per year, as against the 155,000 ounces produced in 2021.
“We will also have access to adequate financial capital for Wassa to realise its growth potential and to extend the life of asset by developing the underground Southern Extension, as well as bringing on board the surface mine potential; particularly, at Father Brown, Benso and Mpohor.
“I believe that all these changes have occurred so that the Wassa Mine will realise its full potential. The new owners, Chifeng Jilong Gold Mining Limited, have a proven track-record as a safe and responsible corporation and are well-positioned to build on the good platform and reputation we have worked so hard to establish over the years,” he said.
Mr. Adjetey Sowah added that employees’ job security will also be assured, because the takeover will yield a prolonged life span of the mining site.
For the surrounding communities, he said the move will increase employment opportunities; which will create more economic activity and stability in the catchment area.
“Again, an avenue is created to continue abiding by the MoU signed between Golden Star Resources and its host communities and to enhance our corporate social responsibilities, as well as continuous payment of royalties to the various stools. This gives us the opportunity to remain in business and strengthen our relationships. There will be continuous contributions to national development through tax payments and increased job opportunities for the people of Ghana,” he stated.
Chifeng Jilong Gold Mining Limited
The new operator, Chifeng Jilong Gold Mining Limited, has agreed to respect and honour all existing contracts that were signed by Golden Star Resources – including employment contracts and collective bargaining agreements which have been entered into with employees of the mine.
Chifeng is an international gold mining company that is listed on the Shanghai Stock Exchange with a market capitalisation of approximately US$3.7billion.
It operates five mining assets, including the world-class Sepon gold mine in Laos. In 2018, Chifeng acquired Sepon before undertaking significant capital expenditures to redevelop the gold processing facility in order to double its future gold production.
The Wassa Mine covers an area of 52.89km2. Since acquiring the assets in 2002, Golden Star has mined a total of 2.4million ounces of gold. In 2015, the company transitioned from open-pit mining to underground mining, which resulted in an increment of production from 104,000 ounces in 2016 to 165,000 ounces in 2020. With an additional 11 years of mine life, Wassa Mine when well-developed is expected to produce 1 million ounces of gold.