TORONTO – Dundee Precious Metals has updated information on the planned Ausmelt furnace maintenance at the Company’s Tsumeb smelter in Namibia. The shutdown commenced as scheduled during the first quarter, although slightly ahead of plan following a decision to bring the timeline forward to ensure a safe and orderly maintenance process.
Originally planned for 30 days, the shutdown is now expected to extend for up to 40 days, with a return to full operations targeted for the end of March. The revised timeline reflects COVID-19 related safety protocols and travel restrictions, as well as a decision to increase the scope of the maintenance work after encountering water in the furnace during the course of the maintenance work. All necessary materials and contractors for the maintenance are now on site.
As a result of the revised timeline for the maintenance shutdown, combined with additional converter maintenance undertaken during the quarter, complex concentrate smelted for Q1 2021 is expected to be approximately 25,000 to 30,000 tonnes.
Processing of complex concentrate from the Company’s Chelopech mine is not expected to be impacted by the Ausmelt furnace maintenance and the extended timeline is not expected to impact 2021 guidance for complex concentrate smelted of 220,000 and 250,000 tonnes nor Tsumeb’s forecast 2021 sustaining capital expenditures of $16 to $20 million.
Dundee Precious Metals Inc. is a Canadian-based international gold mining company with operations and projects located in Bulgaria, Namibia and Serbia.