Equinox Gold Corp. has provided a construction update at its Greenstone Project in Ontario.
The overall project is 35% complete and on schedule to pour gold in Q2 2024. Procurement is 37% complete and construction is 28% finished.
The project is being developed as a 60/40 partnership, respectively, by Equinox Gold and Orion Mine Finance Group and will be one of the largest gold mines in Canada, producing more than 400,000 ounces of gold annually for the first five years and more than five million ounces of gold over its initial 14-year mine life.
- On schedule – The Greenstone Project is 35% complete and on schedule to pour gold in the first half of 2024.
- On budget – The Greenstone Project remains on budget. At June 30, 2022, 56% of total capital costs had been contracted and Greenstone had spent $315mn (26%) of its $1.23bn construction budget (100% basis).
- Positive results from Independent Quantitative Risk Assessment – An independent quantitative risk assessment confirmed the validity of the schedule and construction budget based on detailed engineering and construction progress and concluded the Greenstone Project remains on schedule and on budget.
- Earthworks 48% complete – Overall earthworks are well advanced and slightly ahead of schedule. Plant site earthworks are 76% complete, tailings facility earthworks are 29% complete and the Highway 11 realignment earthworks are 39% complete.
- Structural concrete 37% complete and structural steel 21% complete – Structural concrete and structural steel are ahead of schedule and on track to have the majority of buildings essentially complete and ready to enclose by year end so work can continue indoors during the winter months.
- Pre-production mining commencing Q4 2022 – Four CAT 793 (250 tonne) haul trucks have been delivered and are being assembled and the first Komatsu PC-5500 excavator will be assembled during Q3 2022.
Christian Milau, CEO of Equinox Gold, praised the Greenstone team for staying on schedule and budget, despite the challenges of starting construction during COVID and dealing with inflationary and supply chain issues.
"The independent quantitative risk assessment of our schedule and construction budget has provided additional comfort that we're on track to deliver the project as planned in the first half of 2024," he said.
"Excellent earthworks progress during the winter months means we can focus on concrete foundations and steel structures during the summer and fall and enclose the majority of buildings before year end, which will allow us to maintain productivity during the winter months. We look forward to hosting an investor and analyst tour in September to showcase construction progress."
Equinox Gold and its lenders have revised the credit facility to increase the maximum amount available under the revolving facility from $400mn to $700mn.
Peter Hardie, Chief Financial Officer of Equinox Gold, said: “The revised credit facility increases Equinox Gold’s liquidity, reduces our cost of capital and extends the maturity date of our debt while we focus on building Greenstone."