Toronto, Ontario, April 10, 2018 – Continental Gold Inc. (TSX:CNL; OTCQX:CGOOF) (“Continental” or the “Company”) is pleased to provide a construction update for its Buriticá project in northwestern Antioquia, Colombia (please see accompanying photos). Construction completion and first gold pour remain on schedule for H1 2020, with commercial production ramp-up anticipated approximately six months after first gold pour.
The Buriticá project is approximately 25% complete with more than 40% of the total project cost committed to date. The Company continues to be well-financed with available liquidity of approximately US$262 million as of March 31, 2018.
Major earthworks continue, with completion scheduled for Q4 2018. The concrete contract has been awarded and the contractor has mobilized and set up operations in the Higabra valley. Concrete placement for the mill foundations is expected to begin this week, followed by concrete for tailing filters and leach circuit in the coming weeks. Mill and surface infrastructure detail engineering and procurement are moving forward on schedule; progress is more than 75% complete as of March 31, 2018.
The access road into the Higabra valley was completed earlier this year and is in use by large transport trucks for equipment deliveries. Fabrication of major mill components continues and shipments are beginning to arrive in country. Building fabrication and installation is ongoing and structural steel fabrication has commenced with erection expected to begin in Q3 2018. Other major contracts — including the general contract for installing steel, mechanical, piping, electrical and instrumentation — and the tailing facility construction are expected to be awarded by the end of Q2 2018.
Underground development continues on schedule with advance rates increasing as development crews undergo training and become more efficient. As of March 31, 2018, 2,400 metres of underground development has been completed with advance moving forward on three different fronts: the Yaraguá ramp, the Veta Sur ramp and the Higabra tunnel. Major mobile equipment has been arriving to site in accordance with the development ramp-up schedule, including 4 jumbos; 3 rock bolters; 8 underground trucks; 3 LHDs and 16 utility vehicles to date. The current underground fleet includes more than 70% of mobile equipment required for production startup.
The Company continues to seek out and employ local talent and is providing mechanized mining training to these workers. As of March 31, 2018, 82% of the Company’s workforce were from the department of Antioquia with 56% from local municipalities within the Buriticá project’s influence area.
“This is an exciting time for the Buriticá project,” commented Donald Gray, Chief Operating Officer. “Construction activities are moving forward rapidly and the project continues to meet our construction schedule targets. We are truly witnessing the transformation of the Higabra valley into a modern mine site. Underground development rates are also meeting expectations as ramp-up continues. We remain strongly focused on maintaining our construction and development schedule, ensuring we achieve our health and safety objectives and delivering on our strong commitment to building Colombia’s largest and most modern underground gold mine.”
View of Infrastructure Area
Plenty of Activity at Site
Prepping the Mill Foundation for Concrete Pour
Veta Sur Ramp
About Continental Gold
Continental Gold Inc. is an advanced-stage exploration and development company with an extensive portfolio of 100%-owned gold projects in Colombia. Formed in April 2007, the Company – led by an international management team with a successful track record of discovering and developing large high-grade gold deposits in Latin America – is focused on advancing its fully-permitted high-grade Buriticá gold project to production with first gold pour on track for early 2020.
For information on the Buriticá project, please refer to the technical report, prepared in accordance with NI 43–101, entitled “Buriticá Project NI 43–101 Technical Report Feasibility Study, Antioquia, Colombia” and dated March 29, 2016 with an effective date of February 24, 2016, led by independent consultants JDS Energy & Mining Inc. The technical report is available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com, on the OTCQX at www.otcmarkets.com and on the Company website at www.continentalgold.com. Additional details on Continental Gold’s suite of gold exploration properties are also available at www.continentalgold.com.
This news release contains or refers to forward–looking information under Canadian securities legislation, including statements regarding the development and construction of the Buriticá project, completion of various construction and development activities, expected delivery of underground mining development and drilling equipment, ramp-up of underground development activities, timing of production start-up, advancing the Buriticá project and future plans and objectives of the Company, and is based on current expectations that involve a number of significant business risks and uncertainties. Forward–looking statements are subject to other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from expected results. Readers should not place undue reliance on forward–looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from any forward–looking statement include, but are not limited to, an inability to advance the Buriticá project to the next level, failure to convert estimated mineral resources to reserves, capital and operating costs varying significantly from estimates, the preliminary nature of metallurgical test results, delays in obtaining or failures to obtain required governmental, environmental or other project approvals, political risks, uncertainties relating to the availability and costs of financing needed in the future, changes in equity markets, inflation, changes in exchange rates, fluctuations in commodity prices, delays in the development of projects and the other risks involved in the mineral exploration and development industry. Specific reference is made to the most recent Annual Information Form on file with Canadian provincial securities regulatory authorities for a discussion of some of the factors underlying forward–looking statements. All the forward–looking statements made in this news release are qualified by these cautionary statements, and are made as of the date hereof. The Company assumes no responsibility to update them or revise them to reflect new events or circumstances other than as required by law.