Randgold to pour first gold at DRC’s Kibali Mine

Randgold Resources (LON:RRS) (NASDAQ:GOLD) said Tuesday it is posed to generate gold for the first time from its Kibali Mine, in the Democratic Republic of Congo, in October this year, as the giant project has reached its immediate preproduction development stage.

According to Randgold’s CEO, Mark Bristow, more than a million tonnes of ore from the open pit mine had already been stockpiled to feed the metallurgical plant’s oxide circuit, scheduled to start commissioning in the third quarter this year.

Kibali, developed in partnership with AngloGold Ashanti (NYSE:AU), is set to generate 30,000oz of gold in the next six months before going full steam with an output of 700,000oz a year in the next four years.

Despite being located in an area marked by bloody post-colonial fights that continued into the past decade, Randgold says Kibali has won the DRC’s government support, as well as the approval from locals.

The company has built villages where more than 15,000 people from in and around the gold mine are being relocated into newly built villages.

Bristow highlighted the firm is also training 71 people from the local community and 22 DRC nationals as plant operators and supervisors at the Tongon mine in Côte d’Ivoire and its Morila mine in southern Mali.

“We are on the brink of delivering another world-class gold mine to our stakeholders. The first of its size in this country, it will be an enormous economic boon to the DRC, the Province Orientale, the local community and our investors,” Bristow said in a statement.

The development of Kibali is the largest project undertaken to date by Randgold and it is expected to become one of the largest gold mines in Africa.