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Zimbabwe gold producer increases output by 75 percent

One of Zimbabwe’s largest gold producers said Tuesday it had increased production by 75 percent after expanding its milling unit.

Freda Rebecca Mine said output rose to 47,770 ounces in the year to March 30, 2012, from 27,240 ounces in the corresponding period in 2011.

The mine, in northern Zimbabwe, is part of Mwana Africa mining group which has operations in several countries, including Angola, DR Congo and South Africa.

Mwana Africa chief executive officer, Kalaa Mpinga, said Freda Rebecca’s contribution to group earnings this year also rose from US$ 37.5 million in 2011 to US$ 79.8 million.

“At Freda Rebecca, ramp up in production continued after the installation and commissioning of the second milling circuit in June 2011. The production rate of 50,000 ounces per annum was established in the quarter to September 2011,” he said.

“For the whole of the financial year, Freda Rebecca produced a total of 47,770 ounces of gold, contributing US$ 17.7 million to group profits and generating US$ 15.5 million of cash inflows,” Mpinga said.

He said indications were that Freda Rebecca would increase production further this year to over 70,000 ounces, nearly double last year’s output.

Already in the first half of the year, the mine had produced a total of 32,230 ounces, close to the 47,770 ounces it produced last year.

Until recently, gold was Zimbabwe’s largest mineral export. It has now been overtaken by diamonds and platinum.


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